Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Sing Your Own Song: An Opera Love Story

Thursday, November 17 - 7:00 pm

The documentary Sing Your Own Song: an Opera Love Story, shows how a multi-generational group of Southern California opera singers – some of whom have performed together every Sunday night for fifty years – must find a way to keep their tradition alive when their performance venue is forced to close.  Audience members as well as performers relate how they first came to appreciate opera and how this group of strangers, people from all walks of life and of different generations, became a second family bonded together by their love of opera.

The film demonstrates how a passion for music can enrich our lives. One doesn’t need to be an opera lover to be swept away by this passion and the commitment these singers bring to their art.  Anyone who has followed a dream and worked hard to make it come true will recognize a part of themselves in this story. 

Producer/Director Anne Davis O’Neal is an award-winning theatre director.  Sing Your Own Song: an Opera Love Story is her first documentary and she was virtually a "one person band," not only producing and directing, but also shooting and editing the movie.  Anne gained her technical background working in television production at Disney.  She has created promotional videos for nonprofit arts organizations, educational programs and live theatrical productions.   She has also filmed and edited short videos for fundraising campaigns on various crowdfunding platforms.
This very special evening will include the producer/director and some of the singers from the film to talk about the film and answer questions.  Join us Thursday, November 17 at 7:00 p.m. in the Library’s Barth Community Room.  Light refreshments will be served.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

More Jazz & More Swing!

Jazz & Swing from A to Z: The Story of America's Music
Six Tuesdays, 12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. beginning October 18

The wildly popular Dr. Thom Mason, USC Professor Emeritus of Jazz Studies at the Thornton School of Music, returns to Crowell Public Library with a new six-session course sponsored by the Friends of the Library.  Mason riffs off the popular classes that he taught over the last two years, savoring the stories of Louis Armstrong and the New Orleans sound with its African roots, Big Band stars Charlie Barnet and Les Brown, up to Tony Bennett and the jazz stars of today.

The series schedule this year will be:

October 18:                       New Orleans & Louis Armstrong
October 25:                       African Roots
November 1:                     Charlie Barnet & Les Brown
November 8.                     1950s & 1960s
November 15:                   Tony Bennett
November 22:                   Jazz & Swing Today

Thom Mason was chairman of the department of jazz studies at the USC Thornton School of Music from 1983 to 1996. During that period he created the bachelor of music, masters of music and doctor of musical arts programs in jazz studies. He is a saxophone, clarinet and flute specialist and has played with such notable artists as Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, Jack Sheldon, Louis Bellson, and Ernie Watts.  His multimedia presentations are filled with music excerpts, rare photos, film clips, humorous stories and live demonstrations that stimulate, educate and entertain.  They are not to be missed! No reservations are required.

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Bill Robles, Courtroom Artist Extraordinaire

Thursday, October 6th, 7:00 p.m.

The 1970 Charles Manson trial launched Bill Robles career as a television news courtroom artist, followed by the high-profile trials of Patricia Hearst, John DeLorean, the Hillside Strangler, Rodney King. O.J. Simpson, the Unabomber, Oklahoma City bombers Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols, the Menendez Brothers, Robert Blake, Michael Jackson, Donald and Shelly Sterling and mostly recently, Led Zeppelin.  When the media has been locked out of high-profile trials, Bill Robles has been there to give us the picture, with all the context, action and emotion in color.

Through 44 years, Mr. Robles has mastered the art of on-the-spot illustrating, working for a strict and unyielding taskmaster:  television news.  He has said, “I love courtroom illustrating… the immediacy… working feverishly… the adrenaline gets going and suddenly it’s over, on the satellite and around the world.”

In 1981 Bill Robles was selected by NASA to be on site to document the first four space shuttle missions, which is one of his favorite assignments.  He has been nominated for an Emmy, received a gold medal from the Los Angeles Art Directors Club for his coverage of the Manson trial, and three gold medals from the Broadcast Designers Associations.  In 2003 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Society of Illustrators.  A native of Los Angeles, Bill Robles now resides in Brentwood.  He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the Art Center College of Design where he also taught illustration for five years.  He currently teaches drawing at Los Angeles Trade Technical College.

Mr. Robles is also one of the subjects of The Illustrated Courtroom:  50 Years of Court Art by Elizabeth Williams and Sue Russell, a book whose cover art by Robles shows Charles Mansion lunging toward the bench during his trial.  As one might imagine, there are a few stories behind each illustration. 

Don’t miss this very special evening at Crowell Public Library on Thursday, October 6th in the Library’s Barth Community Room.