-Courtesy of Broad Street Communications
“The book ‘Dracula’ launched an undying interest in vampires that’s still with us today,” said Jacqui Bowman, Director of the Center for Education and Acting Co-Director of the Mütter Museum. “We’re celebrating its role in pop culture, but going deeper with an exploration of what it means to be dead, the role of tuberculosis in vampire lore, and vampires in historic literature.”
Philadelphia’s museum of fascinating medical history will celebrate with a year-long lineup of lively events and educational offerings, including:
Dracula Case Exhibit
Opening October 6, 2022
Peer into a coffin-shaped exhibit to discover how people in the Victorian era would have identified a body as more than a corpse—as a vampire! Inside this new case exhibit, the Mütter explores how folklore, embalming and funerary practices, and the misunderstanding of diseases like tuberculosis, led to post-mortem identifications of ordinary citizens as vampires in the 19th century.
Included in Museum admission
Historical Happy Hour — Dracula and Physiognomy: The Science of Face Reading
October 12, 2022
Mütter educator Kevin Impellizeri delivers a talk on physiognomy (“reading” a person’s face), the pseudo-science behind it, the role it played in “Dracula,” and the surprising ways that it still influences popular culture today.
Virtual on Zoom
Silent Film with Live Music: “Haxan”
October 16, 2022
Screening of “Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages,” complete with a live score from Not-So-Silent Cinema! This 1922 Swedish horror-documentary masterpiece explores witchcraft, demonology, Satanism, and the persecution of women in the Middle Ages.
Drinks with Dracula at The Woodlands (cemetery)
October 20, 2022
The week before Halloween… tiptoe through The Woodlands Cemetery after dark to find your way into a chilling location. You’ll enter into an intimate Dracula-themed happy hour with pop-up exhibits. Then, settle in for a dramatic reading of Chapter 16 of Bram Stoker’s legendary novel, “Dracula” by actors from West Philadelphia’s Curio Theatre.
The Woodlands, 4000 Woodland Ave, Philadelphia
Dracula’s Parlor at Mischief at the Mütter
October 28, 2022
During the annual Mischief at the Mütter event, experience a Dracula pop-up exhibit, a vampire-themed specialty cocktail, and surprises.
January 7, 2023
Donate blood at the Mütter Museum. Don’t worry about bringing your pointy teeth – the American Red Cross will be running the show. Donors earn free Museum admission on a future date.
The Gothic Science of “Dracula”: A Literary Seminar Series
February 8 and 22, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
March 8 and 22 at The Rosenbach
A four-evening course led jointly by the Mütter Museum and Rosenbach Museum & Library exploring the intersection of science and literature, through the lens of “Dracula.” At the Mütter, we’ll learn how exhumed bodies were identified as vampires and examine how science blended with the occult in the 19th Century. At the Rosenbach, using first editions of the novel and Bram Stoker’s own manuscript notes, we’ll analyze how science was incorporated into the book and what this means for how vampires developed in the years since Dracula was published.
Mütter Museum and Rosenbach Museum & Library
Valentine’s Day Film Screening: “Thirst”
February — date coming soon
Valentine’s Day film screening of “Thirst,” a Korean horror masterpiece. In this tale of forbidden love and bloodlust, a catholic priest is turned into a vampire and falls passionately in love with his best friend’s wife, with dramatic consequences.
Film Screening: “Interview with the Vampire”
May — date coming soon
Join the Mütter Museum for a screening of the 1994 film Interview with the Vampire. A San Francisco reporter interviews Louis de Pointe du Lac (portrayed by Brad Pitt), a morally-afflicted vampire who recounts the tragic story of his life and his dysfunctional vampire family with Lestat (played by Tom Cruise) and the child-vampire Claudia (Kirsten Dunst). Mütter Museum
Use the hashtag #YearofDracula to engage and follow along.