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I originally conceived and posted this for a different blog, but since this site is missing any mention of my father’s mother, I’m re-posting it here to remedy that omission.
“It was much better than I thought it would be.”
I know that’s not exactly high praise, but for me, that’s the most memorable and pleasing review I received for “A Choice of Witnesses.” That’s because it came from someone who actually helped fund the post-production of the film, my grandmother, Joanna Roos. (See her name in the end credits.) Also my grandmother offered a unique perspective because of her long career as an actress, first on Broadway and then in movies and television. (See her on the Internet Broadway Database; see her on the Internet Movie Database.)
When I finally had this 16 mm student film edited, scored, mixed, printed and transferred to video, I made the trip from Connecticut down to New Jersey to the Meadow Lakes retirement home where she lived. I had been there many times but this time I came equipped to screen…
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This is a tribute video created to play during my Dad’s retirement party with the Greenville Symphony. (Circa 1990) It runs about 13 minutes.
I think this video was pretty well done and deserved of an Internet audience. There were no credits on the production nor the VHS tape I’ve had stashed away in my drawer for nearly 25 years. If someone knows the videomakers, please write in.
Of the people appearing in the video, I know very few of them. My mother, Betsie Rickett, is featured prominently. The video is introduced by Bradford W. Wyche, at that time the President of the Greenville Symphony Association. Others appearing: Dr. Richard Maag, James Parham, Karen Lawton, Mary (Evelyn) McCrary, Peggy Parham, Patricia Quarles, John Parham, Martha Kitterman, Joel Keller.
The date “4/29/90” was written in pencil in what looks like my father’s handwriting on the label of the tape. VHS was never meant to be an archival video format, but the quality pulled from this 25 year-old tape is mostly passable.
Here’s an article cut-out from the Times-News (Hendersonville) that my Mom sent me in the mail. (May 28, 1989) The photo of my Dad conducting is a little freaky in terms of his hair and eye wear, but it’s a good article. Sorry about the quality and presentation of the PDF but I think it’s worthy because of the way he’s quoted in the article.
Below are photos I took in 1986 when my father conducted the Greenville Symphony in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. If memory serves, I’m pretty sure this was a dress rehearsal the afternoon before the performance. This is when the GSO’s home venue was McAlister Auditorium on the Furman University Campus.
Photo notes: The picture quality is not what I would hope for but it was the technology available to me at the time which was a Pentax 35 mm SLR (handed down from my father) with 5294 Kodak motion picture film processed by RGB Photo Lab in Hollywood, CA. I was able to dig out the negatives recently and scanned them with an inexpensive 5.1 megapixel scanner I bought on Amazon.com. Sorry about the hairs, I don’t have a suitable place to handle the negatives.