Yes, we have a new storytelling MP3, just in time for gift–giving. So if you’re planning on giving a loved one a mobile phone or tablet, make sure it comes with some quality storytelling. Come get it.
Yes, our little MP3 series will be making a comeback.
In the meantime, I’ve updated the PDF booklet that accompanies our first release, which came out just six days before my dear friend Diana left us and her unfinished Journey to the West (Xī Yóu Jì, or 西遊記) retelling behind. Get it here (192kbps).
We are preparing to completely overhaul our Just One Story… series — there will be a new opening title sequence, and we want to get a special signature tune for it all. All of that will be going on during the Fall and Winter months, and it will affect all episodes in the series.
In the meantime, here is a Special Presentation from Rosegarden Television (accessible on both Vimeo and YouTube): Rachel Zucker remembering her mother, Diane Wolkstein, with a telling of the 1992 story Little Mouse’s Painting.
Little Mouse’s Painting ©1992 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2013 Rachel Zucker / Rosegarden Media and Entertainment.
And now, Motoko.
At long last, Just One Story… is BACK at you with our first two episodes of 2013. And we’re also proud to say that we have added what we hope will be the first of many Asian (in this case, Japanese) stories to our growing library.
Without further adieu, please welcome… Motoko.
Please enjoy what you see and hear, and — if you’re as impressed as we are — do remember to support her by buying one of her albums.
Videos ©2013 Motoko Dworkin / Rosegarden Media and Entertainment.
A public service message to the United States broadcasting industry from The Other 98% via Rosegarden Television.
It’s either that, or lose more viewers forever to RT.
[UPDATE 2013.08.11: Amended to reflect the fact that Al Jazeera’s global service will no longer be accessible in the United States with the launch of Al Jazeera America on 20 August. The latter will only be available via certain cable TV services, none of them including either Time Warner or Cablevision-Optimum. Not exactly the warmest of wishes to New Yorkers.]
Finally, we can take the locks off a four song video album featuring Atsumi Ishibashi and Masashi Ishiura — a/k/a Robin’s Egg Blue — performing in an acoustic setting at J-Summit New York (at the Bowery Electric) on 12 May.
For those who were there, we recorded four selections — “Big Flower” (which we had previously recorded in 2011 with the full band), “Nothing,” “Potaru,” and "Boule de neige." You can view all four tracks here at Vimeo.
Our apologies for those who were waiting for this album, as we needed approval from the event’s organizers (as well as Mlle. Ishibashi’s blessings) before we could make it public.
As always, please make sure you support the band by purchasing their releases thus far (Songbird and the ROBIN (フリーダウンロード) EP, both readily available via Bandcamp) and come to their upcoming shows. You can keep up with the band on their website (hyperlinked above) as well as on Mlle. Ishibashi’s own blog (in English and Japanese).
Many thanks to Hiroshi Kono (MarCreation, Inc.), Katsu Oiwake (Japan Summit New York, Inc.) Mia Carla, the staff of The Bowery Electric, and of course to Atsumi and Masashi. This was the best birthday present any videographer could hope for, and it is truly appreciated.
Recordings ©2013 Atsumi Ishibashi, Masashi Ishiura, and Rosegarden Media & Entertainment.
No, we didn’t create any of this. Not the shows, nor the mock adverts for them.
And these are mock adverts, created by CHI & Partners (a WPP subsidiary) on behalf of WNET/Thirteen, the big PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) affiliate in the New Jersey/New York metropolitan area (Thirteen is originally from Newark, New Jersey, hence the state pecking order). If you’ve traveled on New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority’s subway system recently, chances are quite good you’ve seen at least one or two of them.
You could call them “attack” adverts in a way — attacking the culture of reality television. But take a look at the fake channel logos in the bottom right hand corner. Do they remind you of something else?
Maybe they remind you of channels you once watched as part of your cable or DSS satellite (DirecTV, Dish Network) package? Channels that once promised intellect-appealing fare and then went through a horrifying transformation into the lowest of the lowest common denominator?
I thought so. And, apparently, so did CHI & Partners when they created these split adverts for WNET/Thirteen.
Quoth Victoria Davies of CHI & Partners in The New York Times (Sunday 26 May):
"[The pledge drives on WNET] talk to people who are already watching. We wanted to do something outside the channel, something people would enjoy, rather than something aggressive."
"…As originally conceived, public broadcasting was intended to provide a forum for programming that would not be profitable for commercial broadcasting. It was thought that people needed access to the plays of Shakespeare, information about their local government meetings, operas from the Met, and enriching children’s programming that did not constantly try to sell sugary cereals and cheap toys. They needed these things and the three networks were not providing them because there was no profitable way to do so.
But all of that programming is being provided by commercial broadcasters in a way that reacts quickly to consumer demands while maintaining profitability. If you wish to find an opera, a Pulitzer prize-winning play, or educational children’s programming, the best options are A&E, Bravo, IFC, Nickelodeon, or Noggin. And none of that includes the Internet as an emerging source of cutting-edge media and innovative approaches to entertainment and education.”
No doubt that, streaming programming aside (and this is being spelled out by a regular viewer of RT, New Tang Dynasty Television, Al Jazeera, and other outlets available via Roku, mobile apps and such like), the people who devised WNET/PBS’s faux–reality TV campaign looked at Mr. Burrus’ paper and collectively asked: Is this guy for real? Has he looked at Bravo, A&E and everyone else lately?
I’d like to look at this campaign, say “Well played, WNET/Thirteen, well played,” and move on. But their campaign, albeit ballsy on a certain level, has two issues. First, if more people are streaming their TV fix nowadays, how many of them even just occasionally look at a PBS station? Secondly, is it also possible that some streamers, many of them likely cable–cutters and dish–dumpers, are also saying “no, thank you” to the PBS of today? (We won’t even get started on S. Derek Turner’s essays for FreePress, the latest dealing with the five–hundred–channels–and–nothing–on world of cable.)
Of course, there is also the potential for serious backlash from a number of fronts: the fans of free market showbiz “job creators” (FreedomWorks, Citizens United, Heritage Foundation, and certainly Cato), cable companies who either peddle reality TV content as part of their triple-play scams — or who own some of the reality channels outright (as does Comcast, which now runs NBC-Universal, where Bravo ended up), and of course, right-wing pundits who’d love to see public broadcasting six (or more) feet under.
In other words, this is hardly the end of the fight. Someone get us a scorecard.
[UPDATE 2013.07.20: The campaign has been escalated to now include actual TV spots on WNET/Thirteen and WLIW/21, this one apparently being the first.]
Artwork and video ©2013 WNET/Thirteen — Educational Broadcasting Corporation.
There will still be stories at the Statue of Hans Christian Andersen in New York’s Central Park — the Hans Christian Andersen Storytelling Center has posted the schedule online, and it looks like at least we will be recording some (but, because of our new camera’s limitations, not all) of the 1st June and 21 September events (the memorials for our dear friend, the late Diane Wolkstein). The 20th of July is also a strong possibility.
We have more to say on our website. And we hope to see you at the Statue sometime this Summer.
It’s the Rosegarden’s own Mr. Morgan (center, finding it hard to smile for the camera) with Atsumi Ishibashi (left) and Masashi Ishiura of Robin’s Egg Blue outside the Bowery Electric in New York, post-performance (12 May 2013).
Mr. Morgan can afford to act odd because it was his 51st birthday.