Cinema 53

From 2017-2019, Gray Center developed and supported Cinema 53, a screening and discussion series presenting conversation-provoking films by and about women and people of color at the historic Harper Theater in downtown Hyde Park. 

There are no upcoming events scheduled right now. Please check back soon.

Past events



 Jul 20, 2019, 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM
 Harper Theater

5238 S Harper Ave

Third Annual Silver Room Block Party Film Fest: 
“The Bigger Picture:  Chicago Black Media Showcase”
Presented by Cinema 53 as part of  The Silver Room Block Party

A Black media boom is rippling across Chicago, with a growing number of festivals, series and programs springing up across the city, and longtime film venues expanding their platforms for new work. Cinema 53 celebrates this moment with a unique Black media showcase at the annual Silver Room Block Party - an incredible array of film and video works, plus local makers and media programmers on-site throughout the day. Featuring five distinct line-ups from Black Harvest, Collected Voices, Chicago South Side Film Festival, CIFF’s Black Perspectives and Open TV, plus highlights from the South Side Home Movie Project. Meet the directors, producers and programmers from every program on the red carpet at the photo-ready entrance booth in front of the Harper Theater. Free admission and free popcorn!



 Jun 06, 2019, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
 Harper Theater

**Due to unforeseen circumstances, this event is being rescheduled. Sorry to keep you waiting! Stay tuned to this page for updates**



 Apr 24, 2019, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
 Harper Theater

5238 S Harper Ave, Chicago

Chicago filmmakers Brandon "Manny" Calhoun and Wills Glasspiegel from The Era Footwork Crew screen and discuss a series of short films from their archive that explore and expand upon the history of Chicago footwork. Calhoun and Glasspiegel's work engages footwork as a catalyst for collaborative filmmaking, community organizing and nonprofit activism through the arts. Footwork started as a dance to house music on the west side of Chicago in the 1980s. Today, it's an internationally recognized dance and electronic music. This hour-long screening and group discussion, moderated by UChicago music scholar and Cinema 53 curator Seth Brodsky, will be followed by a Chicago footwork party, DJ'd on vinyl by the originator of the footwork sound, RP Boo.