Barbara Bain and René Rivera To Lead Cast Of THE GIFT OF PEACE 12/10

89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio's (SCPR's) Crawford Family Forum in association with CoActive Content will present a Staged Reading of Stacey Martino's play, "The Gift of Peace," in observance of Human Rights Day. The play focuses on creating a U.S. Department of Peace, and will be followed by a Panel Discussion focusing on Non-Violent Conflict Resolution.

The event will be presented at 89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio's Crawford Family Forum; 474 South Raymond Avenue; Pasadena, CA 91105 at 8:00 p.m. on Friday, December 10, 2010. Admission is to this event is free, but reservations are required. Seating is limited, and on a first come, first served basis. Reservations can be made by calling Jenny Smith at 89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio, at 626-583-5232, or online at www.scpr.org/events/forum.

"The Gift of Peace" has toured around the country. Under the direction of Valentino Ferreira, the cast of this presentation of the play will include: Barbara Bain, Heather Carmen, Julia Schuler Decker, Jimmy DeStefano, Elisa Evans, Sumi Sevilla Haru, Barbara Mealy, Jason Powell, René Rivera, Tony Sanders, Elayn J. Taylor, Caryn Ward and Cheryl Ward. The Staged Reading will be followed by Panel Discussion focusing on Non-Violent Confliction Resolution, which will be moderated by KPCC Reporter, Brian Watt. Panel Participants will include: Adrianne Ferree, Emily Linnemeier, Terry Mason and Tasha Oldham.

In addition to the Staged Reading and Panel Discussion, a brief movie trailer of "Change Is Gonna Come," about the journey of 27 strangers performing Stacey Martino's play, "The Gift of Peace," while traveling on a cross-country grass roots journey to establish a U.S. Department of Peace, will be shown. The film is helmed by Emmy Award-nominated and Directors Guild of America Award-winning director, Tasha Oldham.

The Crawford Family Forum, A Town Hall for the 21st Century, is a physical manifestation of SCPR's mission to strengthen the civic and cultural bonds that unite Southern California's diverse communities. The Crawford Family Forum deepens and expand SCPR's role as a centering institution for Southern California by engaging people of all backgrounds in ongoing, face-to-face conversations and explorations of the most interesting and important issues, events and cultural developments of the day. The Crawford Family Forum is made possible by generous support from Gordon and Dona Crawford.

Led by Artistic Director, Stacey Martino, CoActive Content creates, produces and distributes a broad spectrum of media content focused on entertaining, educating and activating communities. The CoActive Content team is comprised of professional artists and grassroots activists. Presently CoActive Content members are in post-production with Smalltown Productions on a documentary, "Change Is Gonna Come," www.changeisgonnacome.com. CoActive Content's next project is "Footlz," a series of children's books teaching discipline through empathy rather than a system of punishment and rewards.

About The Artists:
Barbara Bain is probably best known for her work in the landmark television series "Mission: Impossible," where she created the pivotal role of "Cinnamon Carter," and, in the process, became the first actress in the history of television to receive three consecutive Emmy Awards for Best Dramatic Actress. Bain followed with the role of Dr. Helena Russel in the now classic British syndicated science fiction television series "Space: 1999." Her stage work has garnered her Los Angeles Critic's Circle and Dramalogue Awards. She is a member of The Actors Studio.

Heather Carmen is an artist, actor and designer with a deep passion for connecting and activating communities through art and entertainment. She started organizing community events when looking to bring her diverse neighborhood in Echo Park together through a block party - much inspired by the tight community of the neighborhood she grew up in Columbus, OH. Carmen launched the (Public Displays of Art) Art Walk in Echo Park - Los Angeles' up and coming artistic neighborhood. She recently joined CoActive Content as Director of Community Programming.

Julia Decker has been seen on "Bewitched," "Dragnet" and "The Man Upstairs." In 2007, acting and activism began to blend together for Decker when she played the role of The Writer in a touring production of Stacey Martino's play, "The Gift of Peace," which was performed in eight cities in eight days. Her latest film, "Remember the Eyes," has enjoyed a successful festival circuit run, including playing at Festival De Cannes. She is a member of The Actors Studio.

Jimmy DeStefano has over 70 credits in Television ("CSI," "FlashForward," "Cold Case," "The Walkers"); Film ("James Dean," "Looking For Comedy in a Muslim World") and Theatre ("The Dreamer Examines His Pillow," "Those the River Keeps"). He has worked with distinguished directors Mark Rydell, Kathryn Bigelow and Albert Brooks. DeStefano is an member of The Actors Studio.

Elisa Evans played the roles of "The History Student" and "The Office Worker" in Stacey Martino's cross-country tour of "The Gift of Peace." The tour was documented in the documentary, "Change is Gonna Come."

Sumi Sevilla Haru served as a Screen Actors Guild national board member for 33 years and a Hollywood board member for two years. She was the SAG acting president in1995 and served as national recording secretary, and national 1st vice president. She received the prestigious Ralph Morgan Award in 2009. Haru was co-founder and national chair of the SAG Ethnic Employment Opportunities Committee. She has been on the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists national board since 1976. She was a national vice president on the Executive Council of the AFL-CIO from 1995 to 2001. She has performed with the East West Players, and has been in episodic television, motion pictures, hosted programs for KPFK-FM radio, and was a public affairs television host on KTLA-TV for 17 years.

Barbara Mealy has appeared in the films "Frankie and Johnnie" and "When Harry Met Sally." She has also been seen on television on "NYPD Blue," "Oprah Winfrey Show," "The Young and The Restless," "Hill Street Blues," "Our Street," "General Hospital," "Lou Grant" and "The Jeffersons," among others.

Jason Powell has been seen in the films "A Thin Line Between Love and Hate," "Soul Plane," and Stacey Martino's "Change Is Gonna Come." Television credits include: "The Parkers" and "Half N' Half." As a musician he has performed and shared the stage with artists such as: Boys II Men, Chaka Khan, Will I AM, John Legend, Kool and the Gang, Chuck Berry, Gloria Gaynor, Rudy Ray Moore and
Andre Williams.

René Rivera appeared on Broadway in "Salome" starring and directed by Al Pacino. His Off-Broadway credits include: "Richard II," "In The Jungle of Cities," "Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2," "Hamlet, (also on PBS), "The Way of the World," "Romeo and Juliet," "Macbeth" and "As You Like It." Film credits include: "Disturbia;" "Before Night Falls;" "Bordertown;" "Oranges;" "Break A Leg;" "Lords of Dogtown;" "The Salton Sea;" "Me and Him;" "Light Sleeper;" "Carlito's Way," "It Could Happen To You" and "Wilde Salome," starring, directed and written by Al Pacino. Television credits include appearances on: "NYPD Blue," "Law and Order," "The X-Files," "ER," "The Out of Towners" and "Miami Vice." More recently earlier this year, Rivera appeared in the World Premiere of the critically acclaimed production of Stacey Martino's latest play, "The King of the Desert (El Rey del Desierto)." Martino's play, "The King of the Desert," starring Rivera, will be presented again in 2011 in a soon to be announced new production. Rivera is a Lifetime Member of The Actors Studio.

Tony Sanders is the Artistic Director and founder of SHINE! LA's Youth Theatre. He has worked in regional and Off-Broadway theatres, as well as on National Tours. He has appeared in Stacey Martino's documentary film, "Change Is Gonna Come." His solo show, "Mojo de Negro...a modern-day minstrel show" was selected for the Inaugural Hollywood Fringe Festival. Additionally, he is the lead trainer and owner of HomeBody Fitness (aka HoBo Fit), as well as a Lighting Designer.

Elayn J. Taylor has appeared on stage, in film and on television. Appearances in plays include: "Fences," "A Raisin In The Sun" and "Joe Turner's Come And Gone." Film roles include "Heaven's Fall," "Humboldt County" and "Something's Gotta Give." Television appearances include "The Event," "Brothers and Sisters," "True Blood," "CSI: Miami" and "Cold Case."

Caryn Ward has appeared on television on "The Game," "Entourage," "Lincoln Heights," "The Shield," "Friends" and "General Hospital." Feature films credits include "Motives" and "N-Secure." Ward guest stars in the TV One sitcom series "Love That Girl."

Reverend Cheryl J. Ward, J.D. is Dean of the University of Transformational Studies and Leadership at Agape (UTSLA). She serves as Assistant Minister at the Agape International Spiritual Center, is President of the Board of Trustees, Head of the Curriculum Design Team at UTSLA Services. For over 14 years, Reverend Ward has taught classes at Agape, including the Foundational classes, Self Mastery classes and also facilitated various Revelation POD's. Reverend Ward is a lawyer having practiced more than 31 years. She is a former Dean of the Law School at the University of West Los Angeles. She is a dynamic International Speaker and Lecturer.

Stacey Martino (Playwright) has collaborated with director Valentino Ferreira several times in the past. The first collaboration was a tour of her play, "The Gift of Peace," which continues to be performed across the country. Locally the play was presented at UCLA's Freud Playhouse in 2007 under the direction of John Rubinstein, featuring 27 high profile actors dedicated to social justice, including Francis Fisher, Ed Asner, Amy Brenneman, Dan Lauria, Amy Smart, Esai Morales and James Pickens, among others. "The Gift of Peace" is now being made into a documentary entitled, "Change Is Gonna Come," www.ChangeIsGonnaCome.com, helmed by Director's Guild of America award winning director, Tasha Oldham. The second project she has worked on with director Valentino Ferreira is on her critically acclaimed one-person show, "A Slow Crawl Home," a true story exploring the subject of homelessness. More recently earlier this year, Martino collaborated with Ferreira on a third project, the World Premiere of the critically acclaimed production of Martino's latest play, "The King of the Desert (El Rey del Desierto)." Martino's play, "The King of the Desert," will be presented again in 2011 in a soon to be announced new production. Martino is a Lifetime Member of The Actors Studio.

Valentino Ferreira (Director, "The Gift Of Peace") has collaborated with actress and playwright Stacey Martino on several occasions. Previously he directed her one-woman show, "A Slow Crawl Home" produced to critical acclaim at The Laurelgrove Theatre, and then later presented in another production at The Tiffany Theatre in Los Angeles by Mark Rydell and Martin Landau through The Actors Studio. Ferreira also directed Stacey Martino's "The Gift of Peace," which toured across the United States in cities affected by violence, including New Orleans, Oklahoma City and Washington, D.C. More recently earlier this year, Ferreira collaborated with Martino on a third project, the World Premiere of the critically acclaimed production of Martino's latest play, "The King of the Desert (El Rey del Desierto)." Martino's play, "The King of the Desert," will be presented again in 2011 in a soon to be announced new production. Ferreira was accepted into The Actors Studio in New York on his first audition and had his play, "Lay Down and Die," premiered at The Circle In The Square in New York, starring Eisa Davis, directed by Joe D'Aquino.

About The Panel Participants:
Brian Watt (KPCC Reporter; Panel Discussion Moderator) came to KPCC from Marketplace. As a producer there for 3.5 years, he filed a number of his own stories and even filled in some mornings as host. Watt got his first job in broadcasting at age 11. He was a co-anchor for a television news magazine for children in his hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina. He holds degrees in Theater from Yale University and the Sorbonne, and has worked as an actor in France, Italy, Brazil, Hungary and...Hollywood. He has appeared in a few television shows, including: "The West Wing," "Judging Amy" and "The District."

Adrianne Ferree (Panelist) is a Licensed Architect and Assistant Director of a Facilities Unit within a Los Angeles Law Enforcement Agency where she has worked for 22 years. She is the Assistant Director of Jail Enterprises at the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department which provides inmates with job skills and the opportunity for industries to sell their products. The revenue is then used to fund educational and vocational programs. Ferree will next be facilitating conflict resolution at station levels between community members and deputies. She is committed to working to stop recidivism. She is active in the Peace Building Community and on the Organization Structure Community for the National Peace Academy, which has its home base at CASE University in Cleveland. She has been participating in Habitat for Humanity builds for 10 years.

Emily Linnemeier (Panelist) is the Program Director for the Western Justice Center Foundation. She received her Masters of Science in Conflict Analysis and Resolution in May 2005 from the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University, located in Northern Virginia. From Fall 2005-2006, she was a field representative in the Redondo Beach district office of California state Senator Debra Bowen. Previously, Linnemeier worked as program and editorial assistant for the Middle East Policy Council in Washington, DC. She has also interned with the City of Los Angeles Human Relations Commission on issues of public safety - including working on a safe-passage program for the students of Alain Leroy Locke High School in South Los Angeles - and with the Asian Pacific American Dispute Resolution Center as a conflict resolution specialist.

Terry Mason (Panelist) has enjoyed a few different careers, beginning as an actor/ singer/dancer in local Los Angeles bands and National Tours of "Annie," "42nd Street, and "CATS." Her passion for peace stems from a desire commonly felt for a better world to leave to future generations. Introduced to The Peace Alliance by MariAnne Williamson in 2005, she has found a place for this desire that is practical, concrete and productive.

Tasha Oldham (Director, "Change Is Gonna Come") is an Emmy Award-nominated, award-winning filmmaker. She made her directorial debut with "The Smith Family," which aired on PBS, the BBC, and around the world to over six million viewers. The film won AFI Film Festival's Audience Award and the prestigious Columbia/Alfred I duPont Award. Most impressively, "The Smith Family" won Oldham the coveted Director's Guild of America AwardÒ and was nominated for an Emmy AwardÒ. In 2007, Oldham traveled cross-country documenting the journey of 27 strangers uniting to make difference establish the Department of Peace and Non Violence with writer Stacey Martino's "Change is Gonna Come," which is currently in post production.

Event Calendar Listing:

WHO: 89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio's (SCPR's) Crawford Family Forum in association with Co-Active Content will present a Staged Reading of Stacey Martino's play, "The Gift of Peace," in observance of Human Rights Day. Under the direction of Valentino Ferreira, the cast of this presentation will include: Barbara Bain, Heather Carmen, Julia Decker, Jimmy DeStefano, Elisa Evans, Sumi Sevilla Haru, Barbara Mealy, Jason Powell, René Rivera, Tony Sanders, Elayn J. Taylor, Caryn Ward and Cheryl Ward. The Staged Reading will be followed by Panel Discussion which will be moderated by KPCC Reporter, Brian Watt. Panel Participants Adrianne Ferree, Emily Linnemeier, Terry Mason and Tasha Oldham.

WHAT: The Staged Reading of the play, "The Gift of Peace," focuses on creating a U.S. Department of Peace. The Reading will be followed by a Panel Discussion focusing on Non-Violent Conflict Resolution. In addition, a brief movie trailer of "Change Is Gonna Come," about the journey of 27 strangers performing the Stacey Martino's play, "The Gift of Peace," while traveling on a cross-country grass roots journey to establish a U.S. Department of Peace, will be shown. The film is helmed by Emmy AwardÒ-nominated and Directors Guild of America Award-winning director, Tasha Oldham.

WHERE: 89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio Crawford Family Forum; 474 South Raymond Avenue; Pasadena, CA 91105.

WHEN: Friday, December 10, 2010 at 8:00 p.m.

HOW: Admission is to this event is free, but reservations are required. Seating is limited, and on a first come, first served basis. Reservations can be made by calling Jenny Smith at 89.3 KPCC, Southern California Public Radio Crawford Family Forum at 626-583-5232, or by online at www.scpr.org/events/forum.

 



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