25th Cork French Film Festival gets under way

Notable guests will include world-renowned pianist and composer Neil Brand, and composers Irene Buckley and Laurent Levesque

The 25th Cork French Film Festival got under way yesterday with a gala screening of director Jacques Demy's 1964 musical comedy The Umbrella s of Cherbourg with a very special guest in attendance, his daughter Rosalie Varda-Demy.

The festival will celebrate the work of Demy and will include a special focus on the soundtracks of French films

Notable guests will include world renowned pianist and composer Neil Brand, and composers Irene Buckley and Laurent Levesque.

On Thursday, Brand will accompany Rene Claire's An Italian Straw Hat at the Stack Theatre in Cork School of Music. He is the piano accompanist for silent film productions at London's National Film Theatre.


On Saturday, Buckley will present a specially commissioned live score for Jean Epstein's The Fall of the House of Usher (1928) at St Finbarre's Cathedral in Cork city.

Meanwhile, Brand also presents The Silent Pianist Speaks at the English Market on Wednesday. He will perform the greats of silent cinema with a humorous commentary in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival hit show. This will be followed by an accordion fuelled Belle Époque themed supper in the Farmgate cafe.

The week-long festival also celebrates the 50th anniversary of Ballymaloe House with a gala candlelit supper on Friday, followed by a special screening of Jean Luc Godard's Le Mepris .