Produced by KQED Public Television, this series is about Bay Area artists and arts organizations/ It is a weekly television show, an educational outreach program and a website. More than a showcase for art objects and the artists who make them, SPARK* takes the audience inside the creative process to witness the challenges, opportunities and rewards of making art.
Nagle, Sano, and Birk (#702H) Duration: 27:59 STEREO TVG
* Spark looks at the legacy of modern dance pioneer and San Francisco native Isadora Duncan, whose radical ideas about the art form changed the way the world perceived dance. One of her biggest fans is Mary Sano, who came to the Bay Area from her native Japan to dedicate her life to the preservation of Duncan's work.
* Next, ever wondered what ceramics has in common with rock and roll? You might want to ask Ron Nagle, whose been making both for more than 30 years.
* Then, visual artist Sandow Birk takes puppetry to a whole new level in his filmic adaptation of Dante's epic "The Divine Comedy".
Saxophonist Howard Wiley, Weaver Adela Akers, and other stories (#506H) Duration: 27:16 STEREO TVG
Saxophonist Howard Wiley explores the tradition of spiritual music found at a plantation prison in the deep south, and other stories.
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Leaders (#123) Duration: 25:58 STEREO TVG
To be an artist is one thing. But to lead groups of other artists is a fine art in and of itself. Spark gets an inside look into the hectic and enriching lives of 3 extraordinary arts administrators.
* Michael Morgan: During his thirteen-year tenure as music director of the Oakland East Bay Symphony, Michael Morgan has led an impressive turnabout of a once-troubled orchestra and inspired a broad revitalization of the musical landscape in the East Bay. From middle school visits and young musician tutorials to symphony and opera rehearsals, Spark tries to keep up with Michael Morgan and his busy schedule.
* Brenda Way: With more than 70 modern dance pieces to her name, Brenda Way has earned a reputation as one of the most important women choreographers of her time. In the three decades since she founded the Oberlin Dance Company, she's managed to inspire her dancers and staff to work harder and accomplish more than they ever dreamed possible. We'll see this tough taskmaster at work as she directs her dancers through the rehearsal of Noir, her latest collaboration with composer Jay Cloidt. Then we'll see how Brenda's strong vision and a knack for spotting new talent play out as 18 hopeful dancers try out for just 3 slots in her company.
* Robert Kelley: A Bay Area native and graduate of Stanford University, Robert Kelley founded Palo Alto's TheatreWorks in 1970 and has been its Artistic Director ever since. He has directed over 100 TheatreWorks productions, including 32 world or regional premieres. Spark watches as Robert Kelley directs the last dress rehearsal of TheatreWorks season opener: David Auburn's Tony award-winning play, Proof.
A Sly View (#405) Duration: 28:15 STEREO TVG
Spark visits with artists who use humor and wit to engage, intrigue and expand the frontiers of creativity.
* Keith Knight draws from experience as a cartoonist and finds time to hit the stage to front a hip hop band.
* Electronic sculpture artist Andrew Kleindolph constructs machines that defy logic or function for the sake of building something that might not have existed otherwise.
* Improv group 3 For All can be found "on a stage with no rules," watch as they perform without scripts, format, or preconceptions.
* And rendezvous with Toychestra, an all-woman ensemble who jam out with a wide array of children's toys and instruments.
West Oakland (#415) Duration: 28:39 STEREO TVG
Not everyone knows West Oakland to be an artists' community, but this episode tells the stories of artists who call this area of the East Bay their home.
* Critically acclaimed modernist sculptor Bruce Beasley not only shows us the creation process behind his awe-inspiring sculptures but also discusses area development.
* Despite a lack of funding for school arts programs, high school students who take part in BUMP, the Bay Unity Music Project, are learning about music production from hip-hop professionals.
* John Abduljaami introduces us to his work and regales us with stories about his woodcarvings.
* Finally, tag artist (C)rude leaves political, African-inspired artwork around West Oakland public spaces.