Gary Lucas   the golem  

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem" at the BimHuis, Amsterdam
photo by Arjen Veldt

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem", 53rd Valladolid Film Festival, Valladolid, Spain, 10/27/08
photo by Hector Marquez

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem", 53rd Valladolid Film Festival, Valladolid, Spain, 10/27/08
photo by Hector Marquez

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem", 53rd Valladolid Film Festival, Valladolid, Spain, 10/27/08
photo by Hector Marquez

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem", 53rd Valladolid Film Festival, Valladolid, Spain, 10/27/08
photo by Miguel Vallinas Prieto

Gary Lucas plays "The Golem", 53rd Valladolid Film Festival, Valladolid, Spain, 10/27/08
photo by Miguel Vallinas Prieto

Gary Lucas performs "The Golem" at the Venice Biennale
photo by Riccardo Schwamenthal

Scene from "The Golem" (1920, d. Paul Wegener and Carl Boese)


The original 1920 silent film classic accompanied by acclaimed guitarist Gary Lucas, playing his original solo guitar score live with the film.

Video clip from "The Golem" with Gary Lucas' solo guitar score on the soundtrack: 

Gary's "Golem" show on 7/17/12 at the Silent Movie Theatre in LA totally sold out!! Read a review here.

Read 2 rave reviews from Gary Lucas' recent sold-out "Golem" show closing the First International Fantasy Film Festival of Sao Paulo from the Brazilian website Cine Dementia and Brazilian culture website Sosni.

Read a rave review of Gary's recent "Golem" performance closing the Malaga Film Festival in Spain from the RomaMusica website, English translation here.

"Gary Lucas's project with the Golem is one of the best combinations of live music with a silent film I've ever seen. But beyond it being a powerful performance of mixing a classic old media with fresh new music, Gary's guitar work expresses beautifully the deep and soulful characters in the film. He brings this historic story to life and makes the 90 minutes a very powerful and compelling performance piece."
—Michael Dorf, Founder of the Knitting Factory and artistic director of the Oyhoo Festival

"Absolutely mind blowing, as only a genius like Gary Lucas can do."
—Frank London, Founder of the Klezmatics and a major force in new Jewish music

"A spectacular and entertaining tour de force of kabbalistic silent cinema and hypnotic live music by a master guitarist and composer."
—Judd Ehrlich, Manhattan JCC Director of Arts and Culture, and Emmy-nominated documentary filmmaker 

"Gary Lucas mounted a special screening of The Golem at Rubin Museum of Art's CabaretCinema series on February 10, 2006 as part of an inaugural month of the museumís new Friday night experience, the K2 Lounge. Not only was it a sell-out event, but Gary channeled all the mystical, raw emotion of the film into a score that both matched and transcended its inspiration."
—Tim McHenry, Producer, Rubin Museum of Art

"Gary Lucas's live score to the classic film 'Golem' was truly amazing. One quickly forgot that it was just one man on stage as the range of sounds, music and styles that came from Gary and his guitars was oh so much more then one man could honestly provide.
I had the pleasure of presenting The Golem twice, at the Mahaiwe Prerforming Arts Center in Great Barrington MA. and MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA. I look forward to finding the next venue and opportunity to present it once again."
—Jonathan D. Secor, Director of Special Programs, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
The legend of the Golem—a man made from clay brought to life through kabbalistic magic in 16th century Prague by the actual historical rabbi Jehuda Loew to protect the Jewish community from pogroms—is one of the most enduring and resonant stories in all of Jewish mythology.

The 1920 silent film "THE GOLEM, How He Came Into the World", directed by Paul Wegener and Carl Boese, is considered the definitive version of this amazing tale.

Legendary guitarist GARY LUCAS, whom The New Yorker magazine described as "The Thinking Man's Guitar Hero",  was inexorably drawn to this tale...and this film.

His original solo guitar score for "The Golem" is considered a classic—a seamless blend of innovative music and fantastic cinema which has been delighting and thrilling audiences  in sold out theaters and festivals around the world since he debuted his score in 1989.

"Captain Beefheart guitarist Gary Lucas has been inspiring younger players since the 80's. He recently released a DVD of his momentous score of the 1920 German expressionist silent horror-fantasy film 'The Golem', the tale of a 16th century rabbi who made a man out of clay to save the Jewish community of Prague from termination. Hauntingly brilliant and meticulously timed."
—Village Voice

Since debuting this score live in 1989 with co-composer/keyboardist Walter Horn at the BAM Next Wave Festival, Gary has gone on to accompany the film with a solo guitar version of his score in over 16 countries around the world—performing the work at London's Royal Festival Hall, opening the New York Jewish Film Festival at Lincoln Center, starring at the Venice Biennale, opening the Australian Jewish Film Festival in Sydney and Melbourne, playing with the film in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Amsterdam, Berlin, Florence, Budapest, Toronto, St. Louis, Miami, Tel Aviv, Vienna, Krakow—and of course in Prague, home of The Golem.

"The Golem" is a superb example of the early German Expressionist silent horror cinema at its finest, and went on to profoundly influence such Hollywood horror films as James Whale's "Frankenstein" (1931).

Gary Lucas, whom Rolling Stone calls "one of the best and most original guitarists in America", has been wowing international audiences for years with his many musical projects, including his renowned supergroup Gods and Monsters.  

A profound love of Jewish myth, horror films, and science fiction themes brought Gary Lucas to "The Golem"—and it has proven to be a match made in heaven.

For all silent film fans, horror film freaks, folks interested in the Kabbalah and Jewish culture, and lovers of thrilling and innovative music: this one's for you!

—Musik Express (Germany)

"Instant synchronicity between the film and the music" 
—Village Voice

"Best work—Gary Lucas's science fiction score for The Golem" 
—Ear Magazine
Soundbites from "The Golem":
• Main Title—Rabbi Loew Consults the Stars/The
   Windows Media sample
• The Junker and the Jewess
   WAV sample | Windows Media sample
• Creation of the Clay Man/Astaroth
   Windows Media sample
• The Golem walks with Famulus, Der Bose
   WAV sample | Windows Media sample
• The Festival of the Roses
   Windows Media sample
• In the Synagogue/The Vision of the Patriarchs
   Windows Media sample
Featured Reviews for "The Golem":
Gary Lucas Plays "The Golem" a Top Pick at Canadian Music Week in the Toronto Globe and Mail on 3/6/08.

Read a feature on Gary's Golem performances in Australia at the 2007 Australian Jewish Film Festival from Sydney Life/The Australian Jewish News here. 

Read a review of Gary's sold-out Golem show opening Pop Montreal here. Gary Lucas' performance was cited as one of the Best Events of the Festival in the Montreal Gazette with over 800 in attendance, Gary's 4th sold out show this year.

Read two reviews from South by Southwest in the Austin Chronicle here and here.

To read more stellar international raves of Gary's Golem project, click here.
Purchase Gary Lucas' "The Golem" here—our "Gary Lucas Plays the Golem" DVD now upgraded visually using the best source print currently available ("restored" and colour tinted).

printable page

Scenes from "The Golem" (1920, d. Paul Wegener and Carl Boese)