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Adjuct history prof, Kean University.
Playwright, and Phd Student
Radiant Musical Time Travel with Frederick Law Olmsted
"Song of the Land with American Sign Language" is a brilliant, musical short, radiantly directed and produced by Leslie Fanelli. Her Theatre in Motion ensemble is richly integrated with folks with various abilities and disabilities. Young children, their parents, and other adults, inclusive of stately senior citizens, are enjoying the beauty of the exhilarating landscapes designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, The Father of American Landscape Architecture from the 1800s. Central Park in New York City is highlighted, as well as Olmsted's devout love of the land and devotion to his artplus, his gratitude to his landscape partner, Calvert Vaux. "Olmsted" is inspiringly played by William Dembaugh, whose voice is that of a time traveling angel. Gerald Small as the American Sign Language interpreter is creatively electrifying. The cinematography and music sweep you along in this highly enjoyable morsel of musical time travel. This is purely sublime.
Back in 1873 (2014)
A Rare Joy
It is a rare joy to demonstrate through song a great historical achievement; nevertheless, this Theatre in Motion production has accomplished that with an infectious vitality. The creation of Central Park and the life altering achievements of Frederick Law Olmsted are given to the viewer through a video tapestry of song and image. The noble and endearing actor portraying Olmsted (William Dembaugh) makes full use of his compelling voice in relaying this stimulating, musical account. Tribute is paid to Olmsted's partner Calvert Vaux, and then the viewer is taken out of their daily experience on an Arthurian adventure. Seasons pass, and workers labor for sixteen long years from 1857 to 1873, as the model park is brought to pass, with dynamism and dynamic presentation. What could be a dry, historical chapter is turned into a carousel of exceptional cinematography, original paintings, and delicious music that glorify the park's creation. As a result, New York City residents and tourists from the nineteenth century to today have been treated to the love of nature in an urban oasis and its inclusive repose and recreation. People of all ages and backgrounds thunder through this first accessible park, as the twenty-first and nineteenth century mingle. Director Leslie Fanelli and her inventive Theatre in Motion troupe, which includes the sensational American Sign Language interpreter Gerald Small, have skillfully shared this monumental history. It ends all too soon, and the viewer is left with a new appreciation for the jewel that is New York City's (and the world's) park for the people, Central Park.
Bad Moms (2016)
Loved the reality of man children husbands stress and stepford wives for the 21 century. Very similar to parental guidance. Christain queenbee shows depth. Wanda Sykes as a keeping it real therapist steels the show. The kids start off one way grow and become another. Lots of crude humor, but its is right place not middle school in middleage.
Transformation of character, an adult film in the best sense of the word. Left me wanting more. A truly realistic romp of laughter.
Cythnia Nixon plays a dynamic ball of fire with a kelvar spirit who has had enough and truly desires the possibly of her kids taking some steps to grow. But we don't fall into the what's the matter with kids these days record which has been played too much.
Song of the Land (2014)
Excellent Breathtaking Time Travel
"Song of the Land" with American Sign Language is a short film of sweeping beauty. It demonstrates the transformative ideals and vision of the incredible, nineteenth century landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, who designed (along with his partner, Calvert Vaux) the stunningly featured Central Park. It is awe inspiring to know that this incredible landscape is man-made, especially when seeing the curvilinear vistas. Not only is the viewer treated to the beauty of Central Park, other lovely landscapes are featured, as well. The scope of Olmsted's imagination is phenomenal in that it brought this lovely scenery to life. The multi-generational casting of park visitors with and without disabilities is refreshing. The actor/singer playing Olmsted embodies the part, and his voice is wonderfully melodious. The American Sign Language interpreter adds vitality and energy to the film. The use of intertwined paintings performs the aesthetic function of representing the passage of time. As an energetic park patron and history professor, I truly enjoyed viewing the historical time travel.