World Premiere Screening at the Anthology: April 23

The Sun Palace movie will have its world premiere screening at the Anthology Film Archives in New York, April 23 as part of NewFilmMakers. Please, please come. It will double as a CD pre-release event for Music of Shadows, my upcoming CD on the innova label that features "The Long Days Closes" (also the soundtrack to the Germ Requiem section of the movie) as well as some music originally intended for playback in the St. Paul sewer system. Be assured, nobody will leave empty handed or with a dry eye.

WHAT: Philip Blackburn's one-hour film, The Sun Palace; an experimental, intense, sensuous, musico-medical vintage mashup extravanganza with something to do with tuberculosis, Colorado, rich people, stigma, artistic talent, and public health crises (not unlike the more recent HIV one). Another time, another plague...

Gardiner tents for chasing the cure in Colorado Springs, 1905

Gardiner tents for chasing the cure in Colorado Springs, 1905

WHERE: Anthology Film Archives, 32 2nd Ave (at 2nd St), New York, 10003. 

F train to 2nd Avenue, walk two blocks north on 2nd Avenue to 2nd Street; 
#6 to Bleecker St., walk one block north on Lafayette, then two blocks east on Bond St. (turns into 2nd St.) to 2nd Avenue.

WHEN; Wednesday, April 23, 2014, at 6pm. Stay around and chat with Philip and other family, innova friends, and random strangers.

UCCS performers on the mesa near Cragmor

UCCS performers on the mesa near Cragmor

COST: $6 but comes with an hour of intense pleasure, fellowship, and a free CD.

RSVP: on Facebook or send a message to Philip

WANT A TEASER? Watch the trailer

Where the Columbines Grow

Once a year at Cragmor Sanatorium in the 1910s-'20s the patients and doctors reversed their roles for a day. The Cragmor Frolics (or Follies) were times when the invalid residents could participate in fun and games to the best of their abilities: wheelbarrow races, sputum cup folding, riding on the shoulders of nurses, juggling, cards, etc.

In 1915 the state of Colorado adopted a new State Song, Where the Columbines Grow, which is known to have been performed at Cragmor. The actual last verse has been rewritten to reflect the residents point of view.

Performed during the live version of The Sun Palace at UCCS by performers from VAPA.

Since I Had'm

1922 poem by TB patient Ralph Stubbs, performed during The Sun Palace live show by Zach Bailey and Delaney Hallauer, with music by Brent Wollman. Edited by Philip Blackburn.

Since I have had’m I have eaten 2500 eggs, in every shape, form, and manner, except raw;

Drunk 3700 glasses of milk, and consumed 600 loaves of bread fixed up as milk toast.

I have had my temperature taken over 2600 times, and broke three temp sticks. Have spilled three hot-water jugs on my feet, worn out ten rubber hot-water bottles and a dozen rubber rings.

Have slept on one side all the time, with a tender spot on the ear on that side, and another close by.

My pulse has been filed over 2600 times, two teeth have been pulled, and five gallons of salve have been rubbed on my ‘ploorisy.’

I have been under the X-ray ten times and under the stethoscope 50 times. I have had 30 accidents that require the nurse, her hypo, and the bag of ice for my chest. Number of ice-bags for my head—no record.

Consumed over 1200 cups made by Stone & Forsythe, Boston.

Used 200 pounds of paper napkins and 3500 No.4 Sacks.

Flirtations with nurses—too dangerous.

Cursed doctors—same.

I have put on my clothes 4000 times. Taken them off—ditto.

Pronounced a Goner four times.

I have taken over 3000 baths and ten gallons of American Oil. Used 1500 quarts mouth wash, 10 quarts of Chlorotone Inhalent, and swallowed 3000 soda mints.

Fifteen men have sat on my chest, listened, and thumped. They have tweaked my ears, poked down into my throat, and lifted my nose.

I have whispered 1-2-3, and gone through the “in and out” stunts.

Have had tonsillitis and three good rounds of the Flu.

Have been broke and lost a home.

Am doing nothing but—






Figure it up, and see what I have been doing, and how long I have been at it.

Doing a come-back at 29.

I thank you.

Sonnet to Russell Cheney

Justin Hatfield reading H. Phelps Putnam's poem to his friend (and Philip Blackburn's great-great uncle) Russell Cheney, the painter. Russell brought Put out from Yale in 1917 to Cragmor to recover from asthma in the Colorado climate. They were together until 1919. This poem celebrates the 10th anniversary of their friendship in 1927 (published in Trinc); the same year that Put had an affair with Katherine Hepburn and uncle Russell painted her portrait.

Christ never rose again, but you arose,

My ribald saint, out of a deathly bed

To snatch my insubstantial life from those

Despairs and poisons which had made me dead.

How dark and delicate you are, and yet

How full of blood, and I am only caught

In irony, a nervous vulgar net.

We were a sturdy differential fraught

With an unlikely mirth, and hand in glove

Between strange-sorted friends and gay disdain;

But all the time, beyond my scope of love,

Lonely you prowled the inward vaults of pain,

Seeking, beyond harsh loyalty, some rest

From bearing the vague misery of quest.