Panzerkreuzer Potemkin

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December 21, 1925 saw the world premiere of the Soviet silent film Battleship Potemkin. Directed by Sergei M. Eisenstein, this propaganda film celebrated the Revolution of 1905. The opening scene, a mutiny on the battle ship Potemkin, set the tone for the entire movie.

Distributed in Germany by the Communist film production company Prometheus, the motion picture drew the ire of censors because of its revolutionary message. Based in Berlin, Prometheus produced a version with German intertitles in 1926, and commissioned the young Viennese composer Edmund Meisel to write a score.

Four years later, Meisel produced a complete soundtrack, with ambient noise and spoken dialogue substituting the previously obligatory intertitles. With this soundtrack, Meisel went down in history as one of the pioneers of modern film scoring. The entire score was recorded on five audio discs that played in synchronicity with the movie on a turntable attached to a special projector.



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