Queens Welcomes The NYC Five-Borough World Premiere Tour Of TOGETHER, NOT ALONE

The five-borough world premiere tour to Queens with screenings, audience participation and refreshments.

By: Mar. 06, 2023
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Queens Welcomes The NYC Five-Borough World Premiere Tour Of TOGETHER, NOT ALONE

To mark the three-year anniversary of NYC "shutting down" for Covid, a group of Queens-based cultural organizations will welcome the TOGETHER, NOT ALONE five-borough world premiere tour to Queens with screenings, audience participation and refreshments.

When NYC ordered all "non-essential workers" to close up and go home, "we" the community-based cultural institutions, the artists, curators, photographers, administrators, oral historians, storytellers, community educators, teaching-artists [and the list goes on], asked ourselves ARE WE ESSENTIAL? Are the trusted social networks we have forged - over years and decades - essential to maintaining?

Yes! Without a moment's doubt, the city's cultural institutions answered by leaping into action with virtual programming, live broadcasts, digital diaries, international zoom collaborations and performances that spanned the globe. We never stopped finding ways to keep us all connected.

Zip Code Memory Project, Queens World Film Festival, Queens Memory Project, A-Doc (Asian American Documentary Network), Union Docs, Five Boro Story Project, Stoop Stories and LaGuardia and Wagner Archives at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY, will present the Queens stop on the NYC Five-Borough 'Together, Not Alone - Zip Codes Remember' Tour on March 19, 3:30pm at The Local in LIC Queens. Doors open at 3:30pm with refreshments from Queensboro Restaurant who mobilized their resources to feed our first responders at Elmhurst Hospital Center as they became the epicenter of the epicenter.

Our goal: to honor, recall, remember and explore that moment, when our city ordered everyone but the most "essential" of us to stay home.

The screenings will include Together, Not Alone, (19 min, Directed & Produced by: Gabriella Canal and Judith Helfand) that emotionally and visually captures the energy, connective possibilities and collective loss/grief/wisdom of a group of New Yorkers who after months of Covid-19 isolation, come together, most of them complete strangers, for an arts-based experiment in community building.

March 19 marks the date that the Queens World FIlm Festival became the first festival in the world to leap into the digital space with 11 days of 191 films garnering over 30K views from a world suddenly shut down. To celebrate their anniversary, the Queens World will screen two segments of The Listening Tour, a series of short films featuring Queens community members sharing their thoughts on Hope and Resilience. These poignant short films will be preserved in the Queens Memory Project so that future generations will come to understand how we navigated these challenging times.

The Van-Dien Family features three siblings sharing their understanding about hope and resilience and how they have had to lean on both to endure the isolation.

Billy's Story is the testimony of a young army reservist who had less than 24 hours to drop out of college and report to duty in DC on Jan 6. He shares how his resilience can isolate him from other college students who don't have to face the challenges he faces.

Queens Memory Project is a community archiving program founded in 2010 and supported by Queens Public Library and Queens College, CUNY. The project engages with Queens residents to make the public aware of our local history collections through programming and online resources, and to continually add new materials to our collections from the diverse communities of Queens. Queens Memory will screen:

A Day in Quarantine - In this video essay, Lily Deng details a "A Day in Quarantine" living with her parents and two sisters.

Snapshots of Queens: Views from my Block - This video is a compilation of crowdsourced submission to the Queens Memory Covid-19 Project and includes written accounts and images of our contributors' relationship with their neighbors during the Covid-19 pandemic. Contributors include Nili Ness, Angela Shaw and Robert Sarnoff.

LaGuardia and Wagner Archives at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY was established in 1982 to collect, preserve, and make available primary materials documenting the social and political history of New York City, with an emphasis on the mayoralty and the borough of Queens. Their contribution for the evening will be Portraits of an Epicenter, a 6-minute film about LaGuardia's students, documenting their experiences in Queens under the COVID lockdown

Union Docs is an internationally recognized Center for Documentary Art, that recently moved their organization into a building on Onderdonk Ave in Ridgewood Queens. In their words: "We lead a diverse community on a search for urgent expressions of the human experience, practical perspectives on the world today, and compelling visions for the future." THey will be on hand to share how non-fiction storytelling and the very act of documentation "saved us" and helped us save our communities?

Stoop Stories is a documentary storytelling project launched during lockdown to connect, support, and celebrate our NYC neighbors, especially those hardest hit by the pandemic and systemic inequities. We honor generations of New Yorkers who rejoice and take refuge in stoop culture. Stoop Stories will erect a stoop for us to gather around as we reflect on how COVID gave us utterly unique ways to be "Alone, Together" and how often that night has been the stoop. Everyone will be able to take a 'STOOPIE' and share with us where their stoop was.

The Asian American Documentary Association (A-Doc) is a national network that works to increase the visibility and support of Asian Americans in the documentary field. A-Doc will be screening two films out of a larger series of micro-docs they commissioned during the height of the pandemic, knowing that their filmmakers had unique access to very personal stories on the frontlines of the pandemic:

Home, Delivered by by Sarita Khurana - Under quarantine, South Asian seniors living in Queens, NYC find comfort with the help of a local organization. Filmmaker Statement: "I grew up in Queens, not too far from the epicenter of the pandemic in New York. I wanted to tell the stories of my neighborhood aunties and uncles who are now amongst the most vulnerable. I am inspired by the ways our communities continue to show up and take care of one another."

Quality of Care by ManSee Kong chronicles the experiences of a young physical therapist at Elmhurst Hospital, known as the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak in Queens, NYC. Filmmaker Statement: "Through the lens of my cousin at his first job as a physical therapist in our home borough of Queens, NYC, this video-story-snapshot is a tribute to all healthcare and essential workers who strive to provide quality