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Concert to Benefit New Piano Fund

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					Amherst Community Television Newsletter

Winter 2007

Concert to Benefit New Piano Fund
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Isaac BenEzra President Ernest Urvater Vice President Anna Carter Treasurer Josna Rege Clerk Paulette Brooks Mary Paris Jean Haggerty Alan Root Dennis Steiner Lacey Johnston Vladimir Morales

STAFF
James MacAllister Interim Executive Director Sean Kinlin Production Manager Gretchen Saathoff Office Manager James O’Connor Program Manager Julia Shively Bookkeeper ACTV is delighted to present the RAUTENBERG-SAATHOFF DUO in concert on Saturday, March 10, 2007, at 2:00 PM at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Amherst. A reception will follow the performance. Proceeds from the event will be donated to ACTV’s piano fund. The grand piano in the studio needs replacing. Our goal is to purchase a previously-owned Yamaha U1 or U3, a large upright with superior tone quality, which takes far less floor space and presents no storage problems. This new acquisition will serve our studio performers well. ACTV will be featuring a live Coffee House this year and a working piano is essential for its success. Prominent violinist Lisa Rautenberg and collaborative pianist Gretchen Saathoff formed the Rautenberg-Saathoff Duo in New York in 1995. The duo performs a broad range of classical music reflecting its members’ eclectic interests. Pianist Gretchen Saathoff has twice toured the nation as pianist with the Norman Luboff Choir. Violinist Lisa Rautenberg made her New York debut with Concert Royale at the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center. Audience members offer such comments as, “Thank you for playing music we can feel!” “It was a superb musical experience for all in attendance.” and “We were enthralled by your concert!” Concert sponsors have characterized the duo’s playing as “mesmerizing,” “unusually dramatic” and “stunningly beautiful.” Their performance this past November at the South Amherst Congregational Church can be seen on ACTV. The concert was part of the twenty-fifth season of Music at South Church Series. More information about the duo is available at their website: http://smartage.netopia.com/rshtrio. Mark your calendar. See you Saturday, March 10th!

Amherst Community Television

Public Access 12 Education 15 Government 17

246 College Street Amherst, MA 01002 Tel: 413 256-1010 Fax: 413 256-0038 www.actvamherst.com info@actvamherst.com Kathleen Fisher Free Speech Newsletter Graphic Design

State of Free Speech
The past year was one of regeneration at ACTV. A new board, coupled with a new professional staff, brought accountability and transparency to ACTV as it pursues its public access mission. ACTV has responded to growing community interest and support to expand governmental, education, and public activities and coverage. The ACTV Board recognizes and is actively responding to the goal of bringing private citizens into public life by building community through public access opportunities, forging coalitions, and transferring private concerns into public activism, without regard to income, education, race, gender, or political persuasion. Our “free speech” mandate shields participants from intimidation or state intervention at a time when the public’s right to know is increasingly challenged. The current trend is toward media concentration in the hands of a few corporate telecommunications giants, along with proposed new federal legislation that may seriously undermine the future of the “Public” in Public Radio, Public Television and Public Access. Now is the time for our community, our local government, and citizens make use of ACTV to preserve their right to know, to speak and to express themselves freely.

Can Anyone Identify This Photograph?

This photograph was found at ACTV. We would love to have any information that anyone out there might have. Do you know who this man is? Do you have any information about when and where it was taken?

LWV-ACTV Alliance
ACTV has been very important for the Amherst League of Women Voters for more than two decades. League members trained in the use of TV equipment videotape their own programs and other programs to be aired for the community. Candidates’ nights are one example of the kind of programs that the community benefits from having on public access television. Public forums on Amherst town government, housing, health care, the environment, and ballot questions, among others, have provided important information to the community when they were aired on the government channel of our PEG access television. The League has had a weekly halfhour television show, Through the League Lens, on ACTV since April 1998. Mary Jane Laus and Alice Swift produce the series and Elisa Campbell hosts and makes the arrangements for the shows. 103 shows have been produced to date. During that time there have been interviews with Rep. Ellen Story, Sen. Stan Rosenberg, the town managers, school principals, and other figures in town, and discussions about town finances, upcoming town meeting warrants, health care, human services, the environment, housing in Amherst, school issues, the charter proposals, the League book sale, voting machine information, suggestions for town meeting improvements, and other issues. The show, which airs on Thursdays at 7:30 pm, is introduced by a rotating camcorder displaying the title followed by scenes from around town, with a snappy musical accompaniment. The League of Women Voters and ACTV have provided nearly immediate election results of the Town elections to the Amherst community and the news media with their Live Election Night Coverage at ACTV. Without this production voters would need to wait to read the results in the newspaper the following day. The show provides lively discussion about local issues and interviews with winning candidates as well as unofficial election results as they are reported from the voting precincts. The League appreciates live coverage of Select Board meetings and all sessions of Town Meeting provided by ACTV. Citizens of the town benefit from the opportunity to observe town government in action. It helps them know who their elected officials are and understand the issues under discussion and how decisions are made.

Isaac BenEzra
President, ACTV

$$ Available
ACTV has limited funds available to assist producers with their programs. If you wish to apply for monetary assistance not to exceed $50 per production, please write a brief one-page description of your project, stating why you need help, and place in the Executive Director’s mailbox. The information you provide should include your full name, address, phone number(s), and email address.

Alice Swift
League of Women Voters

Tiger Cubs Visit ACTV Operation Improve Programming
Hello, I’m James O’Connor ACTV’s Program Manager. In recent months, you may have noticed a change for the better in the quality and content of our programming lineup. We have added a cooking show, and a fishing show to our schedule. Produced in Massachusetts, these shows have a ‘close to home’ feeling. We are also playing a variety of newly created shows by our membership One of our largest ongoing tasks is organizing and building ACTV’s videotape and DVD library. Over the years, boxes of tapes have been put into storage and we have taken on the task of screening, and converting these to modern formats. Building this library allows us to find many gems and replay them, and once in the library, old shows are easy to find when requested. We have also made a great effort to utilize all of our existing equipment whenever possible. We recently revived a forgotten DVD duplicator machine, which is going to be a great asset when multiple copies of a program are requested. This machine also does a professional job of labeling. The Tiger Cubs held a field trip to experience at close range an operating Public Access Television Station. They are from left to right: Patrick Monaghan, Johnathan Pickering, Patrick Olszewski, Giovanni Rivera, Malcom Reyes, and Christian Abernathy. In the second row are Carlos Reyes, Ryan Olszewski,Lynn Hatch, Cindy Pickering, Kathy Hootstein, Mark Olszewski, Susan Reyes, Mike Hootstein and Toni Abernathy.

Sean Kinlin Teaching Studio Production Workshop

The thing I am personally most excited about is making ACTV available for live video streaming over the Internet. As more and more people turn to their computers as a primary source for getting news and watching movies, it is important to make sure that ACTV is also a part of this technological movement. This will give people anywhere in the world the ability to watch this station. If you have any comments, questions or inquiries about upcoming programming, please feel free to drop me a line at <cablecasting@actvamherst.com> Sean Kinlin, right, is shown leading a Studio Production Workshop. The participants are Paulette Brooks, Jimmy Henault and Ernest Urvater. ACTV conducts workshops in Studio and Field Production, Final Cut Pro, Field Lighting. We also provide iMovie editing and Studio B tutorials by appointment.

James O’Connor
Program Manager

PROFILE OF AN ACTV PRODUCER
Interim Executive Director, James MacAllister interviews Dennis Steiner
ACTV member and producer, Dennis Steiner, was a lead singer in rock ‘n’ roll bands during high school. When his rock star dreams were fading, he discovered the jazz scene in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. He was hooked on jazz. Looking for a way out of Cleveland, Dennis was lured to Boston by musician friends who were attending Berklee College of Music. He got deep into the jazz club scene around Boston and found himself one of three owners of a jazz club. Dennis managed what became the legendary 1369 Jazz Club in Inman Square in Cambridge. Currently he is the producer of The Archive Project that documents area jazz performances.
Q: When did you first hear about ACTV? DS: I’d just seen things in the local paper, little features where they’d show pictures of people with cameras set up in a studio and it intrigued me that there was this communitybased organization that would let you do production, something where you could take classes, learn the technology and work at a television station. I loved films, so I thought, “Wow, wouldn’t it be interesting with the technology advancing the way it is to do that.” I could see that it was becoming possible for anyone to make a film doing it with digital video and that’s in fact what is happening. At my age, I’m not going to go to film school or move to Hollywood—like it’s my destiny. That’s a pipe dream. But I was looking for something besides making a living, something creative and here’s an opportunity, ACTV. It costs very little, they’ve got some good equipment, and they’ll train me step-by-step in this process. Q: So when did you join ACTV? DS: One of my old partners from the 1369 Club lives here in Leverett and I kept telling him how I was going to check out ACTV and how it would be interesting to start working in video and the whole thing about it being creative. Finally, one day he called me up and said, “ACTV is having an orientation and we’re going over there.” So he took me over to ACTV, we got the whole schpiel, we found out it was just $10 to join, and we joined on the spot. Once I did that, I took every class they had. I went out as crew on Town Meeting a couple of times as a practicum. I loved it. It reminded me of the jazz club where I was immersed in this art form but I was working it, setting the stage, and seeing to whatever had to be done while the performance was going on. Q: What do you think was the reason for your reluctance to actually check out ACTV, to put that off and just imagine it? DS: I have a way of just sitting on ideas, thinking “Oh, that would be great.” You think, “One of these days I’ll stop in and check it out,” but you never quite get to it because you’re just doing your day-to-day. Also you’re confronted by doubts, like “If I go over there and do this, what am I going to do after that? Do I really have any ideas? Is there anything I really want to do? I may need to have someone give me something to do.” So it was really helpful to have the practicum, shooting Town Meeting. I had a role to play while I got comfortable with the camera and got instruction in operating the equipment. But I was still able to play. I was being directed to get a certain shot, but I

could still see what I thought about the shot. I liked getting the direction and just being prepared to do it. Q: Were there other things besides Town Meeting that you got involved in? DS: Yeah, there were other projects. When I went in with my friend, it wasn’t just the two of us. There was a whole group of six or seven people there and I was aware that they all had independent ideas of projects they wanted to do and that’s what drew them there. Someone was doing a social thing, someone else wanted to do a political speech at Smith College. I helped with that and when we came back from the shoot we started working on editing. I took a workshop in using iMovie, a very simple editing software that you learn before you graduate to Final Cut, which is professional and has a bit steeper learning curve that I’m still climbing. Q: What about your own ideas? DS: You go to ACTV, and you become a producer. Suddenly, it’s wide open. ACTV wants content. They need you to generate something for the community, about the community. I needed a project, something to do that would allow me to keep learning about video, and so I started by doing bookstore readings. I had been going to these readings, and sometimes there would only be one or two people there. I began telling my friends, “You know you should check out these book store readings at Food for Thought.” I liked the bookstore and I was promoting it, like I had promoted jazz at the club. People were interested in what I described to them, so I thought maybe I could make this a video project and bring these to a wider audience. I love turning people on to something I’ve discovered. Everyone seems to be open to doing something for ACTV. There’s so much potential there to reach a broader community audience.Then, I just did it. And I messed up. I made a lot of mistakes, but I knew I was going to make mistakes. At the same time, it put me on the spot. I was in charge. Its like jazz, something happens and

you have to improvise. Now when I go on a shoot, I never think I can’t do it. Q: You now produce The Archive Project that brings you back to jazz. Tell us about that. DS: Loving jazz and film, I had seen a lot of good documentaries about jazz. What always amazed me was the archival footage of these performances. And there was so much jazz going on here. I thought no one knows these guys. Some of them I had never heard of. I thought, “Man this is ridiculous. There’s all these great cats coming through here and we may never even see them again. Some of these guys might die and people won’t even know who they were!” When I owned the 1369, I supported the avant-garde because I thought it was important to the jazz scene to have these guys out there exploring. I thought it would be great to set up a camera and document these guys and it was also a way to legitimize why I was there with a camera. As far as the Magic Triangle and Solos and Duos series that Glenn [Glenn Siegel of WMUA-FM and the University Fine Arts Center] produces, I had to sell the idea to him. It was not like I just came in and he wanted to do it. He wanted me to convince him. So I had to give him the pitch, everything I just described about how these great players were coming through and who knows what they are going to mean to music down the road and how I’d seen all this great archival footage. I was going to these great jazz concerts at UMass. I was impressed. I mean Glenn was really doing something and he was consistent. When he was comfortable with why I wanted to do it, he agreed to try it. Q: You’re at the end of the first season of doing this. What have you learned? DS: I’ve learned that you need something to work on, something that’s going to challenge you. I really want this to be professional. That’s what ACTV is set up to help with, fostering collaboration and sharing ideas across the community.

Dennis Steiner is still turning people on to jazz by asking for them to open themselves up to jazz, to listen without expectations, suspend making judgments, listen like the musician who is improvising every note in the moment, go along for the ride. Check out The Archive Project; it is free speech for jazz on ACTV. Steiner is currently an ACTV Board Member.

JOIN THE ACTV FAMILY
Amherst Community Television (ACTV) seeks your active participation in creating and airing your own television programming. Unleash your creative spirit. Don’t just watch television, make it. ACTV offers you the opportunity to learn production skills from soup to nuts. Be heard! Be seen! Learn to produce video programs for ACTV. We will teach you to use our cameras, microphones, digital edit suites, and all the cables and connectors in between. Then, you can use that equipment at no cost to produce programs for ACTV, your public access channel. Take workshops on field production, studio production, and editing taught by Production Manager Sean Kinlin. Then check out high-quality digital field production equipment. Join existing production teams to gain experience, or create your own production teams and enlist help from station members. Limited scholarship money is available to those with low incomes for courses and membership fees. In addition there is an Elderly Producers fund and a Youth Fund. Email us at <info@actvamherst.com>

ACTV is located in the former powerhouse of the Turners Falls Power and Light Company at 246 College Street (Route 9) just east of Amherst College Campus. There is ample free parking. Orientation for prospective members is held on the first and third Thursday at 6 P.M.

Turners Falls Power and Light

Students Welcome
ACTV extends a special invitation to students of Amherst College, Hampshire College, the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the program of Film Studies at the Five Colleges to become members and be a part of ACTV. We also offers paid work-study positions and unpaid internships for students of these institutions and the Amherst Regional High School and South Amherst Campus.

Our building when it was still Turners Falls Power and Light

www.actvamherst.com

Become an ACTV Member - Join Today!

Honk if You Like Having Fun
These past five months I have enjoyed being IED. I am very lucky to have a terrific staff at ACTV and a Board of Directors that wants to see ACTV grow and offer its membership new and exciting opportunities. I am also lucky to have an active and engaged membership. Among the new opportunities at ACTV is a standing invitation to anyone who wants the fun of being part of a creative process. Creativity is what ACTV is all about. In addition to filmmakers and video producers, ACTV is attracting writers, poets, artists, computer programmers, electronics technicians, costume designers, set builders, political activists, farmers, parents, young people, community organizers, storytellers, actors, dancers, musicians, cooks, historians.... everyone. Like them, you have something to contribute to ACTV. I offer you The Goose Story, which is based on the writing of Milton Olson. This fall, when you see geese heading south for the winter—flying along in V formation—you might consider what science has discovered as to why they fly that way: As each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in V formation the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own. When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird in front. When the leading goose gets tired, it rotates back in the wing and another goose takes the point. While flying in formation, geese honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed. What do we say when we honk from behind? If we are as sensible as geese, we will join with those who are headed the same way we are and we will take turns doing demanding jobs. Like geese, people who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

James MacAllister
Interim Executive Director


				
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