Music (Mike Williams)

Mike Williams interviewed by Richard Wallace

Projectionist Mike Williams describes the process of selecting music to be played in the auditorium prior to film screenings.

We used to … you’ll like this, we used to rehearse gramophone music. Note the gramophone, that’s all we had in those days was the non-sync, you know, and on Sunday afternoon we’d go in and Frank Saunders would run through the records we could use that week. We couldn’t use any records that weren’t sympathetic towards the film we were showing. And I brought in a rock n roll because it was rock n roll records in those days, I brought a rock n roll record in one day because we were showing The Tommy Steel Story and I suggested that we play this record and he went absolutely bananas with me. “We don’t play music like that in cinemas! We don’t play vocals in the intermission. Vocals are not on.” And, of course, I don’t know whether it applied to the rest of the country but we weren’t allowed to play music before 5:30 on a Sunday. We used to open the cinema at five o’clock, and had complete silence until 5:30 and then you could put a record on and play. A legal obligation in those days, yeah. Sunday cinema had only just come in, you know, and they’re very chapel around here, you see. And a lot of the chapels came out at 5:30 so it was all right to play music after 5:30 but not before chapel come out. So Sunday afternoons we used to go in, play the music that Frank Saunders thought was applicable and in all fairness it used to work.

Title

Music (Mike Williams)

Subject

music in the cinema

Description

Projectionist Mike Williams describes the process of selecting music to be played in the auditorium prior to film screenings.

Creator

The Projection Project

Source

Interview with Mike Williams

Publisher

The University of Warwick

Date

04/12/2015

Contributor

Richard Wallace
Mike Williams

Relation

http://cinematreasures.org/theaters/7970

Format

.mp3

Language

English

Type

Sound recording
interview extract

Coverage

1956-1964

Interviewer

Richard Wallace

Interviewee

Mike Williams

Date of Interview

25/08/2015

Location

Cardiff

Transcription

We used to … you’ll like this, we used to rehearse gramophone music. Note the gramophone, that’s all we had in those days was the non-sync, you know, and on Sunday afternoon we’d go in and Frank Saunders would run through the records we could use that week. We couldn’t use any records that weren’t sympathetic towards the film we were showing. And I brought in a rock n roll because it was rock n roll records in those days, I brought a rock n roll record in one day because we were showing The Tommy Steel Story and I suggested that we play this record and he went absolutely bananas with me. “We don’t play music like that in cinemas! We don’t play vocals in the intermission. Vocals are not on.” And, of course, I don’t know whether it applied to the rest of the country but we weren’t allowed to play music before 5:30 on a Sunday. We used to open the cinema at five o’clock, and had complete silence until 5:30 and then you could put a record on and play. A legal obligation in those days, yeah. Sunday cinema had only just come in, you know, and they’re very chapel around here, you see. And a lot of the chapels came out at 5:30 so it was all right to play music after 5:30 but not before chapel come out. So Sunday afternoons we used to go in, play the music that Frank Saunders thought was applicable and in all fairness it used to work.

Original Format

One-to-one interview

Duration

00:01:23

Bit Rate/Frequency

320kbps

Cinema

ABC (Olympia) Cinema, 67 Queen Street, Cardiff

Citation

The Projection Project, “Music (Mike Williams),” Projection Project, accessed November 14, 2019, https://projectionproject.warwick.ac.uk/items/show/396.

Output Formats