Sunday, September 21, 2008

Southern Circuit "Ripe for Change" Tour Day 5 Paducah, KY

The Southern Circuit Independent Film Tour is giving me a chance to see parts of the United States that I have not visited in years or in some cases have never been. Paducah Kentucky is one of those places. I had no idea what vibrant arts community exists in this historic town on the banks of the Ohio river.

Harvey Sadrow, director of the Paducah School of the Arts showed me around the arts district where dozens of artists, working in different mediums have moved from across the US. Painters, sculptors and others have restored the old historic buildings around the arts district and have built studios and galleries there. At one time the city offered these grand old buildings to artists for a $1. if they committed to move to Paducah and restore them.

Harvey is building the School of the Arts from the ground up but what a palette he has to work with. An old pickle factory is being converted to a building for sculptors. Another will be a film and video production school and center. The town itself and the Chamber of Commerce are helping to drive this arts imitative.

The "Ripe for Change" screening and discussion were held at the Clemens Fine Arts Center at Western Kentucky Community Technical College which the Paducah School of the Arts is partnering with. The projection and sound of the film were great. It is so wonderful that technical improvements in high resolution digital projection is allowing independent filmmakers to present their video productions almost equal with major motion pictures.

We had a great audience for the screening because of the tenacious promotion by Gail Robinson-Butler, director of the Clemens Fine Arts Center. Gail arranged for three radio interviews with me as the film's producer. I wish the film's director Emiko Omori could have been on hand to hear the applause from the audience after the screening. Actually "Ripe for Change" has gotten an incredible response at each of the first four screenings on the Southern Circuit. I next head across the state to the Paramount Arts Center in Ashland, KY. Ashland is in the Eastern part of the state where Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky come together.