The Iron Horse (Irish Premiere) - Opening Night


Date event was on: 7th June 2012
Directed by:
John Ford

Starring: George O’Brien and Madge Bellamy

Year: 1924

Strands: John Ford and Early Cinema / John Ford and the Western

The Iron Horse (Irish Premiere) - Opening Night

Led by US composer Christopher Caliendo, the RTÉ Concert Orchestra lent their hand to a spectacular film and musical event to mark the opening night of the John Ford Ireland Film Symposium with the Irish Premiere of John Ford's masterpiece The Iron Horse.

Proclaimed as a "mind-blowing" experience by acclaimed director Sé Merry Doyle, the event was attended by Ireland's film industry, including Neil Jordan (Byzantium), director Jim Sheridan (My Left Foot), actor Frank Kelly (Father Ted), Academician Kevin Rockett, as well as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Jimmy Deenihan.

The screening began in style with US composer Christopher Caliendo introducing his own score accompanied by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra.

Minister Deenihan praised the Symposium organisers for bringing a diverse range of events to Dublin. The two-hour screening received a warm reception, with Caliendo and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra bringing every audience member to their feet for a standing ovation.

John Ford's 1924 epic The Iron Horse charts a major touchstone in US history - the building of the first transcontinental railroad that would join Eastern and Western Coasts of America.

"An Astonishing Achievement"

The New York Times


Total Film Magazine

Ford captures the grandeur and scale of the endeavour from Indian raids to the driving of the golden spike at Promontory Summit. Yet throughout Ford finds time to recognise those Irish immigrants who were a crucial component of this massive feat. Produced over three years with 5,000 cast, crew and extras The Iron Horse belongs on the cinema screen.

What the audience said:

"Christopher did an amazing job, both in the composition of the work (it was heroic!) and as conductor on the night."

"The outstanding feature of the evening was the stunning score by Christopher Caliendo."

"There was a lovely atmosphere and the whole thing was a treat!"



In Association with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra and National Concert Hall