MS Walk Thank You

May 9, 2012 § Leave a comment

Thank you to all who sponsored us in the 2012 MS Walk.  We greatly appreciate all the support in such an important cause!

The weather was fantastic and we ended up with the perfect day for the walk!

If you would like to donate, there is still time.  There are still other events running, so the donation period will continue for the next few weeks.  If you would like to make a tax-free donation, please go to:  http://main.nationalmssociety.org/site/TR/Walk/NYRWalkEvents?px=1906726&pg=personal&fr_id=18058

Thanks Again!

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Walk for Multiple Sclerosis

April 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Every hour of every day, someone is diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

MS is a devastating disease that eventually attacks every part of the body.  It is a frustrating disease that extends to the families and friends of the person diagnosed as well.  Unfortunately, there is still no cure.

Every year, Silverpen Productions participates in the MS Walk in honor of our family and friends who have to struggle with this disease every day.  Every dollar generated from the walk and general donations goes towards the ongoing research to find a cure.  If you would like to help the cause, you can join up with your local MS Chapter to walk yourself, or you can make a tax-deductible donation either directly to the MS Society, or by sponsoring a walk participant.  Information can be found at www.nationalmssociety.org.

If you would like to sponsor on behalf of Silverpen Productions, you can make a donation at http://main.nationalmssociety.org/site/TR/Walk/NYRWalkEvents?px=1906726&pg=personal&fr_id=18058

We greatly appreciate your support of this very important cause!

What Happened to Capital Region Theater?

March 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

Times are tough.  We all know that.  Belts have been tightened, budgets slashed, many places are forced to close up shop.

People deal with tough times in many different ways.  In the past, the arts have been a primary coping outlet.  Some of our best literature, theater, and films have been born out of a difficult era or an individual’s own hard times.  Granted, there are a few other outlets in this day in age, but still, when people need an escape from reality, they turn to a good book, a night at the theater, a favorite movie, or mindless television.

The Capital Region has always been a hotspot for the theater arts.  We have some wonderful professional theaters as well as numerous community theater venues.  Several of our local colleges have highly regarded theater and arts programs (with many graduates going on to “make it” in Hollywood or on Broadway).  But in less than 2 years, The New York State Theater Institute closed, SUNY shut down its theater department, Proctors took over Capital Rep’s administration, and Schenectady Community College just announced they’re closing their theater department as well.  Despite this turmoil, other areas of the Capital Region’s theater scene are thriving.  Excellent shows are being produced each weekend on stages throughout the area.  Yet, many of these shows are not visible on local news coverage. And more specifically, in the Metroland, which was recently voted as the “Best in the 2012 Poll for Arts Coverage.”  What??  How does the “Best Arts Coverage” magazine not actually have any reviews or listings of some of the most wonderful shows recently produced in the area?

Despite the growing challenges, our local arts venues are persevering and doing their best with more and more limited resources.  Think about what our world would be like without the arts. I know there are some out there that would say, No Big Deal (That’s a debate for another posting!).  But let’s say it IS a big deal.  If there are no arts outlets left, will there ever be another Hemingway, Miller, Spielberg, or gasp, dare I say Shakespeare?  What about us common folk that just need a cheap, entertaining night out?  Please don’t tell me that the only “entertainment” that we’ll be forced to endure is Jersey Shore!

I know that unfortunately there are a lot of things our hands are tied on.  However, there is one thing we can do to make our voices heard.  There’s a petition going around urging the Metroland to support Capital Region theater by providing comprehensive coverage of the local theater scene, and to truly live up to its title of “Best Arts Coverage.”

Please help by signing the petition at: http://www.change.org/petitions/metroland-editor-publisher-cover-capital-region-theater

Let’s make an effort to keep the Arts here in the Capital Region!

National Dance Day

July 28, 2010 § 1 Comment

Executive Producer of Fox’s So You Think You Can Dance (SYTYCD), Nigel Lythgoe, has started a grassroots initiative to encourage the nation to move. Declaring July 31st as National Dance Day, Lythgoe hopes that individuals, communities, organizations, and families will come together and express themselves through dance.  However, this grassroots experiment is quickly turning into a big deal!

Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) is planning on introducing a National Dance Day resolution at a press conference this Saturday in Washington, DC to promote not only dance education, but physical fitness across the U.S.  No stranger to the healthy lifestyles scene, Norton introduced the Lifelong Improvements in Food & Exercise (LIFE) Act this past January to help promote exercise and diet changes to fight the sedentary lifestyles and obesity epidemic that are creeping through our nation. Norton comments that, “More than 30% of Americans are obese, and childhood obesity has tripled in the past 30 years.  Television shows such as SYTYCD are not only entertaining but are also encouraging people to live a physically active lifestyle.  Holding a National Dance Day in the nation’s capital is a terrific way to promote fitness and fight obesity.”

Lythgoe is excited that the effort is taking off and encourages everyone to come up with their own activities for their community.  He has even set up an arena to submit your plans to SYTYCD and they will pick several venues to send their cameras to while covering the event.  Dancers can also upload their videos to share on the Facebook page as well.  Lythgoe makes it clear that, “National Dance Day does not ‘belong’ to any single corporation, television show, or charity.  It belongs to the people.  It will be up to the individuals, corporations, and charities of this country to come up with ways to take part – wherever they may be and whatever their motivation: whether it’s to lose weight, raise money for a non profit, or just have fun.  It is my hope that countless exciting dance ideas will come to fruition on National Dance Day, like the world’s longest conga line in Miami or the world’s longest kick line in front of Radio City Music Hall or scores of breakdancers taking over the Venice boardwalk.  The sky is the limit.”

Not sure what you can do to celebrate? Nap&Tab, two of SYTYCD’s choreographers, have created a short hiphop routine that anyone can try at home or with a group of people. Learn the dance below or make up your own routine!

Although the day is to generate a national awareness for dance – a medium that can bring together all individuals regardless of culture or society’s boundaries into a “positive platform” in which we can all share a moment of peace, expression, and passion – but more than anything, the day is meant to promote health and wellness, so the goal is just to get moving.  Lythgoe hopes to “prove that the ‘Power of Dance’ can MOVE an entire country.”  So throw on some comfy shoes and join the country in moving this Saturday!

Source & for more info, or to upload your videos:  http://dance.blogs.fox.com/tag/national-dance-day/

Albany Dance Examiner

If you would like to share what you and/or your community is doing for National Dance Day, click on comments and we’ll start a list!

Dance Fundraiser for 8 Yr. Old Haitian Girl in Saratoga Springs, NY

February 23, 2010 § 1 Comment

Local dance instructor, Ricardo, has been in Haiti since the earthquake searching for his daughter, Marsha Sopin. He finally found her and now he is trying to bring her home.

This Sunday, Leslie Anne LaGuardia Valencia is hosting a fundraiser at the National Museum of Dance to try to help in his cause. The event will include cocktails, hors deourvres, dancing, and a silent auction.

Continue Reading for event details

Help Save the New York State Theater Institute!

February 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

The New York State Theatre Institute (NYSTI) has been an important part of New York for 36 years. This is a place that prides itself on providing unique, cultural experiences for children and teachers.  Many talented actors have left the Institute to go on to do other exciting, and fulfilling work.  Moving beyond the stage into the classroom, NYSTI provides structure, discipline, and concentrated services to students that includes both their everyday studies, and all aspects of the world of theater and the arts that is so important to them.  The staff also participate in these wonderful educational programs as well.

But with the budget crisis that the state is currently in, Governor Paterson has announced his plan for cutting the NYSTI funding in half for this year, and would be removed from the state’s budget for next year!

This is such an important program in this area. These kids need a place to learn and grow, to foster their self confidence and showcase their talent in a responsible, respectful environment right here at home. Cutting this program forces people to reach outside of the community and the state, and forces the people with less resources to perhaps not achieve their true talent at all. Despite always being the first thing to go, the arts are incredibly important. We wouldn’t be anywhere today if people didn’t learn how to use creative thought. With so many schools cutting their arts programs, it is more important than ever to provide these students a place for a creative outlet and to show that New York really does care.  Do we really want to send the message that it’s ok to cut the arts? That expressing yourself in an artistic form – in any form – is not worth your time?

There is currently a petition up to help save the NYSTI program.  Please help show the Governor and our Legislators that we do care. That we don’t think that the actions that caused the huge budget crisis should be taken out on our children, and that the arts really do matter.  Help remind us why we really do “love New York.”

Please take a moment to go to the site to learn more and sign the petition today!

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/Citizens4NYSTI

200 Songs for 200 Klicks – Help Fight Cancer a Musical Way

October 23, 2009 § Leave a comment

A friend of mine has decided to enter The Ride to Conquer Cancer in his own unique and compelling way.

Brian Chick will be participating in a 200km bike ride this June 2010 to raise money for the Princess Margarett Hospital Foundation for cancer research. As part of the team, “The Eradicators,” Brian hopes to personally contribute at least $3000 to help add to his team’s goal of $25,000.

But raising money is not enough. Brian wants to also help raise awareness to the cause and maybe to even “bring some light into some peoples’ lives.” So, from now until the race, Brian is accepting song dedications from anyone who is interested (no donation required). The process is easy – pick a song that holds some meaning, dedicate to someone you know who is battling or has battled caner, and send the request in.

35 songs are already posted. Check them out at http://200songs.left-button.com/ .  Even if you do not know anyone with cancer, this is an entertaining site. And if you do, then click the request button, and send in something fun for Brian to sing. There is also a spot to send in a donation if you would like to contribute to the Ride to Conquer Cancer Benefit.

200 Songs for 200 Klicks

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