The Black Rider | July 17

Still from the film of The Black Rider by Robert Wilson

Still from the film of The Black Rider by Robert Wilson

RSVP for our 2nd Summer Cinema Event!

The Black Rider: The Casting of the Magic Bullets was a collaboration of unique visionaries. Conceived and directed by Robert Wilson, with book by William S. Burroughs, and music by Tom Waits.

The film is of the original 1990 production, and is presented in the original German with songs performed in English. We will have materials on hand to help with understanding!

“It’s an old German folktale about someone who’s going to sell his soul to the Devil for magic bullets. So he gets these magic bullets from the Devil and of course, disaster. A devil’s bargain is always a fool’s bargain.” W.S.Burroughs

The Black Rider: The Casting of the Magic Bullets is an avant-garde musical fable which rounds out our year of Faustian Bargains. It’s a tale of love, guns, and the devil. Based on German folk story, Der Freischütz (The Freeshooter), and containing strong autobiographical elements from Burroughs’ life (he did shoot and kill his wife), this powerful musical tale can be construed as a cautionary tale of addiction and guns.

APL chooses classic and/or provocative plays we want to engage as thinking artists but aren’t likely to bring to stage in full production. Anyone interested in the play or its context can join us. Each Salon is a unique, dynamic assembly of artists, intellectuals, provocateurs, friends, and family. We read, drink, eat, and — with minimal moderation — let discussion go where it will. Please RSVP for July 17!

Salons are potluck. Please bring a dish and/or drink to share. Theme according to the play… or not!

Seating is ample, but feel free to bring a cushion if you prefer the (hardwood) floor.

Our location has a lot of stairs to navigate (15 just to enter) and, unfortunately, no current access options to avoid them.


  • 4:00pm Arrivals. Mingling and food/drinks.
  • 5:30 pm Screening begins, to be followed by discussion.
  • 10:00pm End time is a best guess. Leave when you need to; we allow the discussion to run its course.
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