Sunday, January 22, 2023

“Songbook” launch party at the Kennedy Center

At 7 pm on Saturday, January 21, 2023, in my small pocket of airspace, two things of note happened:

  • season 1 of Songbook, a web series that I created, wrote, and directed, posted; it’s the culmination of nearly three years of development
  • we kicked off the world premiere screening/launch party at the place where the show was produced: the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC

It was so fun watching a show intended for home viewing on a big screen with a live audience!

Thank you yet again to Kwame Alexander, who introduced me to the Kennedy Center folks and executive produced; Mary Rand Hess, who co-executive produced; David Kilpatrick, Director of Education Programs and Productions; Jennifer Bowman (miss you!); the crew and multimedia team; and, of course, the cast: host Vaughn Ryan Midder, musician Randy Preston, authors Sue Fliess, Mary Amato, and NoNieqa Ramos, and 
three young poets turned lyrical legends:

the poets/lyricists: Isabel, Alexandra, Samaya

the authors: Mary Amato, NoNieqa Ramos, Sue Fliess

David Kilpatrick kicking off the evening

me thanking the room

the room

me, Mary Rand Hess, Kwame Alexander

the kids, authors, host, musician, executive producers, and me

the kids and their corresponding authors

me, David Kilpatrick, Vaughn Ryan Midder

Samaya with her writing and music teachers; the sweetest!

Samaya asking Kwame for an autograph

me with Samaya holding her Songbook swag bag

giving Kwame a thank-you gift

the gift

the cookies (shaped, of course, like musical notes and pencils)

Only bummer of the evening: we caught a chyron typo. In episode 1, “ukelele” should be “ukulele.”

Though hardly enough to put even the slightest dent in a golden night.

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