The 23rd Annual Buster Keaton Convention!

Celebrating 100 years of Buster on the Silver Screen!!

October 6th, 7th and 8th, 2017

Join Keaton enthusiasts from all over the globe as they unite in Buster’s home away from home, Muskegon, Michigan, to celebrate the centennial of one the greatest and most original entertainers the world has ever known!  Spend three days experiencing rare screenings, informative and entertaining presentations on Buster’s career and private life and take a guided tour of the very streets Buster walked as a boy, complete with a softball game on the very field he once played on!

For more information, COME ON IN!!

Special Presentations and Events:

This year we are delighted and honored to present the world premiere of When You Fall Down, an original musical by James Dangerfield which tells Buster’s story from his first movie-making experience in 1917, to his signing by MGM 10 years later. We join Buster on seven separate days, or one week, from this period, following his personal and professional triumphs and trials. With scripted scenes, slapstick, songs and a soft shoe shuffle, the show is a whole new theatrical tribute to “The Great Stone Face;” a man who always got back on his feet, no matter how many times he fell down.  James will be coming all the way from England to debut this work live on our stages, and we’re very excited to present it!

Illusion Genius and Internationally acclaimed Master Magician Ben Robinson will present a live show on Keaton the Conjurer, an education on Buster’s use of the conjurer’s illusionary tricks.  A world class performer, Ben has been a consultant for the Museum of the Moving Image’s MAGICANS ON SCREEN series, and appeared in over six countries, and will be dazzling us with his skills, including live recreations of some of Buster’s most baffling illusions!

The Buster Keaton Convention is proud to host the following speakers and presentations, all providing new light and information on the life of Buster Keaton!

Historian and author David Macleod continues his series of in-depth looks at Buster’s screen career. This year, he’ll be focusing on Buster’s Educational short subjects.  As always, David provides fascinating insight into the films, along with a wealth of information about their making, casts, critical reception, and many other surprises!

Melissa Talmadge Cox, Buster’s granddaughter, will be sharing wonderful tales of life with her grandfather, Buster, including never before seen color photographs depicting life at his Woodland Hills Home.  A delightful woman and tireless champion of her grandfather, Melissa is always delighted to spend time sharing her memories with us!

Keaton biblo-biographer, historian, and author Joanna Rapf will be delivering a presentation entitled A Versatile Comedienne': Anne Cornwall, about Buster's leading lady in College.

Historian and documentary filmmaker Jack Dragga will screen a special documentary on 10 Girls Ago, an uncompleted project from 1962 teaming Buster, Bert Lahr, Eddie Foy, Jr and Dion!  Here the fascinating behind the scenes tale of how this film ALMOST saw the light of day, complete with samples of the only known existing footage!

Historian Lea Stans will be joining us for the first time to cover Buster’s 1963 State Fair tour.  An accomplished author and historian, her writings at her blog, Silent-Ology, are always informative, insightful and entertaining, and we’re delighted to have her with us!

Historian, film preservationist and author David B. Pearson will be giving a special presentation on Lupino Lane, a comedian that Pearson insists has nothing whatsoever to do with Buster Keaton. 

Noted historian, restorationist and Paul Gierucki will present a screening of rare and unseen films starring Buster.  Always a delight, Paul manages to find the most jaw-dropping, entertaining surprises out there!  Not to be missed!!

Ron Pesch will conduct a walking tour of Muskegon, focusing on many of Buster’s childhood haunts, culminating with a baseball game played on the very field Buster frequented as a boy!!

The Celebrated Keaton Auction

A longstanding tradition of our convention, the auction features an amazing assortment of goods.  Past years have featured original artwork, rare posters, documents and publications, and even items owned by Buster himself!

Special Screenings of The General and The Butcher Boy!
The International Buster Keaton Society celebrates the 100th anniversary of Buster's debut in motion pictures!  Buster Keaton's masterpiece The General (1927) is considered by many to be one of the greatest films of all time. The story of a Southern railway engineer who has "only two loves in his life” -- his locomotive and the beautiful Annabelle Lee, the film is a rollicking, epic comedy featuring what many consider to be the greatest comic chase in the history of film. Also screening will be Keaton's first film appearance in Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle's short, The Butcher Boy.  Made 100 years ago, this short is a blistering funny knockabout comedy with some of the most energetic and wild slapstick ever captured on film!  Both films will be accompanied by internationally known silent film organist, Dennis Scott, on the Mighty Frauenthal Barton Theater Organ! Enjoy these classic as they were meant to be seen, on the big screen in a gloriously restored movie palace!

Roaring Twenties Banquet and Speakeasy
Each year, we put on our finest duds (from the 1920’s) for a gala banquet prior to our screenings at the glorious Frauenthal theater.  After the screenings, we take to the stage for a private celebration featuring music, fun, libation and frolic!

(Please Note:  All presenters are confirmed at this time, but are subject to change due to unforeseen scheduling conflicts that may arise.  Additional presenters are being added all the time, so please keep checking back!!)

You will need to make your hotel reservations separately, at the Shoreline Inn. Call the hotel at (231) 727-8483 and ask to be connected to the front desk. Request the Buster Keaton or Damfinos group rate.

To registar online, please click HERE.

PLEASE NOTE: Registrations made after September 1 will be charged a $20 late fee.
Registrations made after September 20 will NOT include a seat at the banquet.

Keep checking back on this website for updates.