Saturday, December 12, 2009

The True Story of Emily D

Check out this amazing animation by Flash Rosenberg. I was blown away by the research Lyn Pentecost of the Lower East Side Girls club did into Dickinson's life. Turns out most of what we think of the lonely, recluse, dressed in white drifting upstairs like a ghost, is BS. Ready to have as Emily says, "If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry." This video will loosen your skull cap or double your money back! I like this new Emily- she's gutsy- like her poems.

It preimered at the big Emily Dickinson Birthday Bash at The Bowery Poetry Club on Dec. 10th, This piece was commissioned by the Lower Eastside Girls Club as part of the National Endowment for the Arts initiative, 'The Big Read.'

Emily Dickinson – Her True Self from Flash Rosenberg on Vimeo.

An impressionistic animation about Emily's life and poetry, energetically revealing the truth about her spirit. It's a myth that Emily was stuck in her little room. She was aware of the world, much loved, prolific and had the courage to follow her own imagination.
11:30 minutes
drawing, script and direction: Flash Rosenberg
video editor: Sarah Lohman
original music: Ken Rosenberg
voices: Renee Laster, Flash Rosenberg
produced by: The Lower Eastside Girls Club, New York City

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Beth Lisick Stars in "Everything Strange and New."

I met Beth Lisick in the mid 1990's when she was burning up the poetry scene in San Francisco. She has gone on to write many books including, "Helping Me Help Myself: One Skeptic, Ten Self-Help Gurus, and a Year on the Brink of the Comfort Zone," published by William Morrow. Adding to her many credits she is now staring in a new indie film "Everything Strange and New." Here is a little from the San Francisco chronicle review-

"Director Frazer Bradshaw has worked as a cinematographer, which you might guess from seeing his new feature, "Everything Strange and New." This drama about the existential woes of a blue-collar worker is told in a strikingly visual way.

Bradshaw is drawn to long takes and a motionless camera to tell the story of Wayne (Jerry McDonald), an Oakland construction worker coping with a rocky marriage and a general sense of frustration. Wayne informs us (he's also the narrator) that he had a satisfying sexual relationship with his wife (Beth Lisick) early in their relationship, but now, with two kids to support and finances tight, his home life isn't so rosy" read the rest of the review here SF Gate

I felt lucky to be in San Francisco to see the opening. The acting in the film is spot-on. Bradshaw has a sharp eye and has written a compelling screen play. The title comes from a line in "The Pied Piper Of Hamelin," by Robert Browning, which is recited in the film in a pivotal scene-

"It's dull in our town since my playmates left!
I can't forget that I'm bereft
Of all the pleasant sights they see,
Which the Piper also promised me:
For he led us, he said, to a joyous land,
Joining the town and just at hand,
Where waters gushed and fruit-trees grew,
And flowers put forth a fairer hue,
And everything was strange and new;
The sparrows were brighter than peacocks here,
And their dogs outran our fallow deer,
And honey-bees had lost their stings,
And horses were born with eagles' wings:
And just as I became assured
My lame foot would be speedily cured,
The music stopped and I stood still,
And found myself outside the Hill,
Left alone against my will,
To go now limping as before,
And never hear of that country more!