Paragon Ragtime Orchestra presents The Mark of Zorro
Presented by Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts
The Mark of Zorro is a 1920 silent adventure romance film starring Douglas Fairbanks and Noah Beery Sr. This genre-defining swashbuckler adventure was the first movie version of The Mark of Zorro and is based on the 1919 story The Curse of Capistrano by Johnston McCulley, which introduced the masked hero, Zorro.
In 2015, the United States Library of Congress selected The Mark of Zorro for preservation in the National Film Registry, finding it “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
The film tells the story of Don Diego Vega, the outwardly foppish son of a wealthy ranchero in early 19th century Spanish California. Seeing the mistreatment of the peons by rich landowners and the oppressive government, Don Diego, who is not as effete as he pretends, has taken the identity of the masked Robin Hood-like rogue Señor Zorro (“Mr. Fox”), a champion of the people, who appears out of nowhere to protect them from the corrupt administration of Governor Alvarado, his henchman the villainous Captain Juan Ramon and the brutish Sergeant Pedro Gonzales.
The Paragon Ragtime Orchestra is the world’s only year-round, professional ensemble re-creating “America’s Original Music” – the syncopated sounds of early musical theater, silent cinema, and vintage dance. Since its debut in 1988 at debut at Alice Tully Hall – the first concert ever presented at Lincoln Center by such an ensemble, hen Paragon Ragtime Orchestra has appeared at hundreds of leading arts venues.
In addition to its worldwide concert hall, university, and festival appearances, the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra has acquired a considerable following both here and abroad through its radio programs on the New York Times’ WQXR, National Public Radio, the British Broadcasting Corporation, and the Voice of America networks. Since 1989 the Walt Disney Company has relied on the Orchestra’s recordings for the outdoor theme music heard at Main Street, U.S.A. at Disney Land, Disney World, and Euro Disney.
Over the years the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra has been heard on the soundtracks of several motion pictures and television programs. The Orchestra’s audio and video recordings have been widely praised, and considered instrumental in rekindling interest in America’s rich traditions of theater, cinema, and dance orchestra music.