CRTOS is dedicated to theatre organ preservation and promotion of this uniquely American instrument. We sponsor theatre organ concerts, silent films screenings, music workshops and theatre organ restoration projects in Oregon and Southern Washington.

Upcoming Shows

  • April 22nd, 2023 – 2:00 pm

    Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927)

    The Hollywood Theatre
    4122 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR

    From the creator of NOSFERATU and LAST LAUGH, we are proud to present,  F.W. Murnau’s 1927 masterpiece, SUNRISE: A SONG OF TWO HUMANS.

    Dean Lemire will be performing his original score on the mighty Hollywood Wurlitzer theatre pipe organ.

    Considered by many to be the best film ever made by a Hollywood studio, F.W. Murnau’s SUNRISE represents “pre-talkie” silent artistry at its peak.

    Murnau’s graceful moving camera, expressive lighting, and superimpositions lyrically evoke the inner passion, pain, and romanticism driving the love triangle among a simple country couple and a vampish city woman. SUNRISE as a whole is wonderfully moving, and remains to this day one of the most visually poetic films to have ever been made.

    SUNRISE’s artistic impact can be seen most notably in CITIZEN KANE (1941).

    It won two Academy Awards: Janet Gaynor for best actress and Karl Struss and Charles Rosher for best cinematography.

    #15 – Top 100 Films of All Time – Variety

    IMDB – 92% rating  –  8.1 of 10 stars (52,090 reviews)

    Rotten Tomatoes – 98%  rating

    Runtime: 94 minutes

    Purchase tickets here

Pipe Organ Pictures Series

Each of these films presented as they were meant to be experienced – with live organ accompaniment! Every film in this series is complemented by an original score, created and performed live by a professional musician.

The Hollywood organ is dedicated to the memory of Beverly Ruth Nelson and is the result of a partnership between the Hollywood Theatre and the nonprofit Columbia River Theatre Organ Society. It is the only such instrument in a public theatre in Portland.

Tickets are $12.00 at the door of the Hollywood Theatre.

About Our Instruments

The Hollywood Theatre

While previous events at the Hollywood have featured live organ accompaniment, the organ sound itself was digital, powered by large speakers backstage. Now, the sound will once again come from real pipes. The Columbia River Theatre Organ Society has spent thousands of volunteer hours meticulously refurbishing the theater organ, tracking down vintage organ parts and pipes, restoring the original Hollywood organ chamber, and installing electrical lines, wind lines, and a mammoth 15hp organ blower in the basement. Ours is the only pipe organ in a public theatre in Portland.

The Hollywood is located at: 4122 NE Sandy Blvd, Portland, OR 97212, two blocks from the Hollywood MAX station.

Cleveland High School

The Kimball pipe organ in the 1100 seat auditorium is maintained by CRTOS. The core of the instrument was originally from the Columbia theater in Longview, Washington. In 1936, it was moved to Benson high school in Portland where it resided until it was moved to Cleveland in 1990. The organ was enlarged and improved there and is one of the best sounding organs of its type in the Pacific northwest.

Disaster struck in 2016 when a steam pipe burst and over one half of the pipe wind chests and other wood components in the north (main) chamber were damaged beyond repair. The damaged items have been temporarily substituted with digital equivalents. Restoring the instrument to its original sound will cost thousands of dollars. If you would like to assist with this project, please make a tax deductible donation to the Columbia River Theatre Organ Society.

Cleveland High School is located at: 3400 SE 26th Ave., Portland, OR 97202

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