823 Washington Street, #4
Hoboken, NJ 07030
PRINCIPAL FILM & TELEVISION CREDITS
THE MYSTERY OF LOVE
(2006): a dozen stories and expert commentaries woven into a poetic exploration of the oldest mystery of the human heart: What is love? Hosted by Anna Devear-Smith. Produced by Joan Connor for Independent Production Fund, a two-hour PBS special.
SACRED STAGE: THE MARIINSKY THEATER (2005): a venerable theater -- that houses world-class companies in both ballet and opera -- finds ways to survive as a creative force after the fall of the Soviet system that had improbably sustained this crown jewel of czarist court culture. With Valery Gergiev, Placido Domingo, Elizabeth Kendall and artists associated with the Mariinsky/Kirov companies. Red Fire Films. Distributed by First Run Features.
THE VENETIAN DILEMMA (2004): the life of a wondrous city, increasingly threatened by the effects of its 14 million annual visitors, is explored through the lives of four Venetians who struggle, each in their own way, to make the city work for them. Produced and directed by Carole and Richard Rifkind for ParnassusWorks Foundation. Score by Joel Goodman.
THE LAST HUNT (2003)
: the Ryan family of Ireland, who maintain a three-hundred-year-old tradition of fox hunting, at the crucial moment when the Master must pass his horn to his son. Directed by Damon Sinclair, produced by Damon Sinclair and Samuel Slater, scored by John Califra.
STONE READER (2002)
: a critically acclaimed book vanishes, its author forgotten; 25 years later a reader sets out on a journey to discover why -- and finds much more than he imagined. Directed by Mark Moscowitz. Audience Award for Best Feature and Special Grand Jury Honor at the Sundance Film Festival.
LOOKING FOR A VOICE: SUZAN-LORI PARKS (2002)
: the emergence of a major new American playwright, who struggles for the right to write and live as a gifted writer with something important and engaging to tell, rather than a Black Voice That Demands Attention. With Jeffrey Wright, Don Cheatle, George Wolfe and others involved in the production of Parks's Pulitzer Prize-winning "Topdog/Underdog." Produced and directed by Oren Jacobi of Storyville Films for the PBS series Stage On Screen.
SHE SAYS:WOMEN IN NEWS (2001): Emmy Award-winning exploration of how female journalists arrive in broadcast and print journalism, bringing a new perspective to the news business. As seen in the stories of ten prominent practitioners, including Anna Quindlen, Judy Crichton, Nina Totenberg and Judy Woodruff. Directed by Barbara Rick, produced by Joan Conner Productions and Out of The Blue Films, for national PBS.
THE AGING BRAIN (2001): the surprising powers
the human brain can maintain into old age, and the challenges of normal aging and
of age-related diseases. Includes a remarkable appearance by 95-year-old Stanley Kunitz,
America's poet laureate. Written and produced by Edward Gray, part of a five-part series on
"The Secret Life of the Brain" by David Grubin Productions in association with WNET.
To be aired on PBS in early 2002.
Director of Editing, Director of Filming Still
THE ENDURANCE: SHACKLETON'S LEGENDARY
ANTARCTIC EXPEDITION (2000): while Europe plunged into World
War I, an Anglo-Irish explorer led a 28-man team on a failed attempt to
cross Antarctica that turned into an incredible (and incredibly well-documented)
saga of survival. Documentary feature for White Mountain Films/NOVA (WGBH).
Telluride Film Festival 2000, Sundance Film Festival 2001.
Writer, Director, Editor
DASHIELL HAMMETT: DETECTIVE. WRITER.
(1999): documentary bio of the hard- and loose-living ex- detective
who put American hard-boiled detective fiction on the map, made and spent
a ton of money in Hollywood, then reached a literary dead-end as he took
up Lillian Hellman and radical politics. Alternate Current and WNET for
Masters (national PBS).
SHAKER HEIGHTS: THE STRUGGLE FOR INTEGRATION
(1998): one-hour documentary on the latest developments in a
remarkable American suburb that has a 40-year history of pro-active integration
and now confronts the gap between black and white students' academic achievement
levels. For national PBS broadcast, Stuart Math Films.
Editor (opening & closing programs)
LIBERTY! (1997): Peabody
Award-winning series of six one-hour programs on the history and significance
of the American Revolution, with actors, recreations, scholars, and an
original orchestral score. Funded by the NEH. Middlemarch Films with KTCA-TV
for national PBS.
VOTE FOR ME (1996): Peabody
Award-winning four-hour survey of the absurd but true: contemporary America
in local electoral politics. Center for New American Media, Midnight Films,
and WETA-TV for national PBS.
ITZHAK PERLMAN: IN THE FIDDLER'S HOUSE
(1995): Emmy Award-winning performance documentary on Itzhak
Perlman's embrace of the traditional Eastern European Jewish klezmer music
of his background. With world-leading klezmer ensembles. Awarded the Rose
d'Or Grand Prize at the Montreux International Festival (of European television
programs). WNET for Great Performances (national PBS).
MUSIC FOR THE MOVIES: THE HOLLYWOOD
SOUND (1995): celebration of movie music of the Golden Age of
American film – Max Steiner, Alfred Newman, Dmitri Tiomkin, David Raksin
– with performances by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales under John Mauceri.
Awarded an Emmy for Best Sound Mixing. Great Performances (national
PBS)/ Alternate Current (New York)/Les Films d'Ici (Paris)/NHK (Japan).
THE ORPHAN TRAINS (1994):
the story of a 19th-century social engineering program, which lasted into
the 1920s. Nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Editor. The film also won
a Best Writing Emmy and was nominated for Best Directing Emmy. Ed Gray
Films for national PBS’s The American Experience.
ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALISM AND DEMOCRACY
(1993): the chances for democratic development in the Middle
Eastern Islamic environment. Galex Foundation for PBS.
MUSIC FOR THE MOVIES: BERNARD HERRMANN
(1992): Academy Award-nominated documentary feature on the work
and life of the pre-eminent Hollywood film composer. Alternate Current
(New York)/Les Films d'Ici (Paris)/Channel 4 (London).
RIVER OF STEEL (1992): half-hour
presentation of the history of the birth of the New York City subway system.
Steel River Productions c/o Stuart Math Films (New York). National PBS
broadcast. Winner of: Cine Golden Eagle Award, Silver Apple at the National
Educational Film & Video Festival, Red Ribbon at American Film &
Video Festival. Shows regularly in New York on the Metro Channels.
PAVAROTTI AND THE ITALIAN TENOR (1991):
performance documentary filmed in Modena, Italy of Luciano Pavarotti and
the Rossini Chorale. New York Center for Visual History/SCETV. Broadcast
on national PBS’s Great Performances, 1992.
PERES - THE ROAD TO PEACE (1990):
exploration of the Israeli leader's failed peace initiative of the 1980s.
Galex Foundation - PBS acquisition. Winner CINE Golden Eagle.
HEAVY PETTING (1988): feature
based on sex education films and features of the 1950s plus interviews
with performance artists. Obie Benz, producer. Released by Skouras Pictures.
SIMPLE JUSTICE (1987): screenplay
developed in collaboration with producer and writer based on a 1940s Kansas
housewife/civil rights pioneer. New York State Council on the Arts script
Director, Editor, Writer
PARTISANS OF VILNA (1986):
documentary feature on the dilemmas faced by Jewish resistance fighters
against the Nazis. In Yiddish, Hebrew, English, Russian. A European Classics
release, major funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Broadcast on PBS’s POV series, and on European and Israeli television.
Anthropos First Prize.
Producer, Director, Editor
THE METROPOLITAN OPERA: THE FIRST 100
YEARS (1983): A series of six six-minute intermission pieces
for the Emmy Award-winning gala special celebrating the Metropolitan’s
centennial, with vintage recordings and footage of the Met’s glorious history
and a witty commentary by Gerry FitzGerald. The Metropolitan Opera House
Script and Music Consultant
YENTL (1983): Barbra Streisand’s
musical version of the Isaac Bashevis Singer short story about the young
woman who poses as a young man in order to study sacred texts. Won Oscar
for best Original Song Score. Nominated for best song by Oscars and Golden
Globe. Golden Globe winner for Best Motion Picture.
Producer, Director, Editor
IMAGE BEFORE MY EYES (1981):
documentary feature which celebrates and explores the rich, variegated
Jewish civilization of pre-War Poland, integrating interviews with documents
from the archives of the YIVO Institute of Jewish Research, including rare
travel films shot in the 1930s. A Cinema 5 release, funded by the National
Endowment for the Humanities. Awarded the Silver Ducat at the Mannheim
Film Festival. Broadcast on national PBS, and on European and Israeli television.
THE WAR AT HOME (1979):
Academy Award-nominated feature documentary that chronicles the anti-Vietnam
War movement in Madison, Wisconsin. Catalyst Films, a First Run Features
WITH BABIES AND BANNERS: THE WOMEN'S
EMERGENCY BRIGADE (1978): Academy Award-nominated documentary
on women in the 1937 Flint sit-down strike. Women's Labor History Film
Sound Editor, Writer of additional lyrics
HARLAN COUNTY, USA (1976):
Academy Award-winning, landmark feature documentary on striking coal miners
in Kentucky. Barbara Kopple, producer. Cabin Creek Films. Writer of additional
lyrics to the song Which Side Are You On. Film was named by Congress to
the National Film Registry, designating it an American Film Classic.
FILM & TELEVISION SCORES
Composer, Arranger, Conductor, Producer
of original music:
HIAS MEANS FREEDOM (1993):
The current programs of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) involving
the resettlement of Russian Jews in America. Half-hour. Scored for trumpet,
violin, flute, and percussion. TELLY Award, 1993. Questar Award, 1993.
THE GOOD OMEN (1978): A contemporary
artist tells a traditional family story of Jewish Eastern Europe, illustrated
by her series of paintings. Half-hour video directed by Bill Daughton.
Full score with violin, clarinet, and flute. Distributed by Phoenix Learning
CAR WASH (1977), BODY SHOP (1977):
PBS’s Sesame Street live-action shorts. Scored for trumpet and piano. (These
segments have been re-broadcast many times since the initial airing.)
CIRCLE IN THE SQUARE (1976):
A full-length dramatic film about love story of two gay men living in New
York City, directed by Bill Daughton. Scored for wind ensemble.
DOS MAZL (Luck) (1975): Children
listening to a Yiddish folktale about luck re-enact the story. Half-hour
Yiddish-language film/video directed by myself. Scored for violin, clarinet,
PARTISANS OF VILNA (1986):
Documentary feature on the dilemmas faced by Jewish resistance fighters
against the Nazis. A European Classics release, major funding from the
National Endowment for the Humanities. Broadcast on PBS’s POV series,
and on European and Israeli television. Vocal rendition of Hirsh Glik’s
Shtil di nakht.
THE CHOSEN (1981): Feature
film based on the Chaim Potok novel. Pianist for the band Kapelye, which
is featured on screen and in the sound track (in the wedding scene).
THE BENT TREE (1977): Sand-animation
short inspired by my rendition of a well-known Yiddish song with text by
Itsik Manger and traditional tune. Unaccompanied vocal. Directed by Sally
Heckel and distributed by Ergo Media Inc. Has played often on cable television.
MUSIC FOR THE MOVIES: THE HOLLYWOOD
SOUND (1995): Created the sound design, which involved sequences
where scenes (and their soundtracks) from classic Hollywood films (Casablanca,
Gone With the Wind, etc.) were integrated with fresh footage of a symphony
orchestra rehearsing and playing the corresponding cue from the original
musical score. Won an Emmy Award for Best Sound Mixing.
PARTISANS OF VILNA (1986):
Created the compilation score from songs sung in the Vilna Ghetto and surrounding
areas. Drawn from historical recordings, field recordings of the original
singers and composers, new renditions, and newly recorded instrumental
accompaniments and versions.
THE CHOSEN (1981): As music
consultant, provided a traditional tune for Rod Steiger to sing as a lullaby.
IMAGE BEFORE MY EYES (1981):
Created the compilation score, representing the wide spectrum of genres
and repertoires that was the musical world of East European Jewry.
Drawing on my experience as composer and sound editor, I function
as the (uncredited) Sound Designer and (Supervising) Sound Editor and Music
Editor on nearly all the films and programs I direct and/or edit, including:
Dashiell Hammett: Detective. Writer. (1999), Shaker Heights: The Struggle
for Integration, Itzhak Perlman: In the Fiddler's House (1995), Music for
the Movies: Bernard Herrmann (1992), River of Steel (1992), Pavarotti and
the Italian Tenor (1991), One Hundred Years of Carnegie Hall (1990), Heavy
Petting (1988), Hollywood Goes to the Opera (1986), The Metropolitan Opera:
The First 100 Years (1983), Partisans of Vilna (1986), Image Before My
Crossing the Shadows (2001):
An original song cycle encompassing the full range of Ashkenazic Jewish
song genres: love songs, lullabies, protest songs, songs-without-words
– personalized in a deeply-rooted but contemporary style. Composer and
lyricist of 14 original Yiddish songs and instrumentals. Lead vocals, piano.
Musical director; principal arranger; producer, from recording sessions
through mixing and mastering.
Partisans of Vilna: The Songs of World
War II Jewish Resistance (1989): Jewish resistance songs originally
written and sung in the Vilna Ghetto and nearby forests during the Holocaust.
Arrangements use accordion, piano, brass, and drums. Nominated for a Grammy
Award for Best Folk Recording. Musical director, co-producer, choice of
repertoire, musical arrangements, liner notes. Vocals and piano.
Past and Present (1980):
The first album of the pioneering Klezmer band Kapelye, featuring traditional
Eastern European Jewish songs and dance tunes. A defining moment in the
Klezmer revival movement. Solo and ensemble vocals and piano.
Vaserl (1977): A groundbreaking
album of new Yiddish songs, in traditional and modern folk styles. Composed
four songs of the album’s ten songs, arranged and conducted all the traditional
songs, produced the recording sessions for one side of the album. Two of
my songs first recorded here, Wissotsky's Tea and Grandfather's Melody
(text by Shike Driz), have entered the repertory of the contemporary Klezmer
revival. Arrangements use piano, clarinet, and violin. Produced by Yugntruf-Youth
Yiddish Songs of Work and Struggle (1972):
The Yiddish Youth Ensemble’s collection of hymns and ballads from the Jewish
worker’s movements of Eastern Europe and America of the late 19th and early
20th centuries. Solo and ensemble vocals. Jewish Students’ Bund Production.
THE JEWISH WOMAN (1977):
Musical Director for a production created by Stanley Brechner and Josh
Waletzky from the works of Peretz, Sholom Aleichem, Sholem Asch, Grace
Paley and others. The American Jewish Theatre, with a cast of nine featuring
CHELM, UNDZER SHTETL (1970):
An original Yiddish musical written and directed by Josh Waletzky and Zalmen
Mlotek based on traditional tales of Jewish folklore's town of fools, Chelm.
Featuring the Yugntruf Ensemble, presented by the Workmen's Circle, and
performed at New York's 92nd Street Y.M.H.A.
FILM AND PHOTO ARCHIVE
YIVO FILM ARCHIVE (1982-1988):
Founded and developed a film archive at the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
to preserve and make available for study and media presentations the unique
holdings that include many privately filmed sequences of Jewish life in
PEOPLE OF A THOUSAND TOWNS (1982-1988):
Project Director for the development of an on-line videodisc system to
store and make accessible large portions of the magnificent photo collection
of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. The Project involved the
preservation, duplication and cataloguing of over ten thousand images.
Funded by the Charles H. Revson Foundation.
M. F. A. from N. Y. U. Graduate Institute
of Film and Television (1974)
B. A. magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa in Linguistics
and Mathematics from Harvard College (1969)
Musical studies at the Juilliard School of
Music, Preparatory Division in piano, theory, and composition (1959-1965)