Images Provided by Gerilyn Shur of Brigade Marketing
The Honorable Michael Bloomberg, Mayor, City of New York; along with The Honorable Scott Stringer, Manhattan Borough President; The Honorable Margaret Chin, New York City Council Member, District 1; and The Honorable Gale Brewer, New York City Council Member, District 6 will officially break ground on the new DCTV Cinema (to be located at 87 Lafayette Street, between Walker & White) on Tuesday, May 7th 2013 in Lower Manhattan. The new DCTV cinema (Downtown Community Television Center, http://www.dctvny.org) will be a state-of-the-art fully interactive digital cinema, and the first “All documentary/All the time” Academy Award eligible cinema in New York City.
The cinema will be built on the first floor of one of the most beautiful buildings in New York City, the 1896 firehouse that presently houses DCTV and will feature world-class documentaries made by prestigious filmmakers from around the globe. The cinema is expected to attract 20,000 attendees in its first year and millions more online, as well as serving as a premier presentation venue for documentary filmmakers and an important component of the New York City Arts community. This all-documentary-focused Cinema will be unique to the industry with top-of-the line digital 4K projection systems, and the capability to both broadcast live events and, at the same time, invite participants to the conversations via the internet from anywhere in the world.
Founded in 1972 by husband and wife filmmakers Jon Alpert and Keiko Tsuno, DCTV has grown into one of the leading documentary film education and production centers in the country, providing resources for thousands of filmmakers and students, including equipment and facility rentals, screenings, master classes, post-production services and educational programs. From humble beginnings (DCTV’s first educational projects operated from the back of a dilapidated mail truck), DCTV has established a community-based foothold in a field dominated by large corporations. From its headquarters in a landmark firehouse in downtown New York City, DCTV serves individuals who could not otherwise afford a media arts education.
DCTV is a unique space where community screenings, master classes, youth programs and affordable production resources all occur side by side in the firehouse with the award-winning documentary work. The company’s film and television work has been recognized with 15 National Emmy Awards, three duPont-Columbia Awards, and two Academy Award Nominations, a Peabody Award, 6 New York Emmy Awards,15 (national) Emmy Awards and many other accolades at film festivals and competitions around the world.
Yearly, DCTV serves over 13,000 New York City media artists, disadvantaged youth, and residents each year. DCTV’s PRO-TV is the most honored youth media arts training program in the country. Offering free training to the youth of New York City since 1978, PRO-TV provides positive creative outlets for young people to address the issues affecting their lives and their communities. Students are paired with top teaching artists who guide them through a rich curriculum of media arts training using state-of-the-art equipment. In programs ranging from one day to three years in duration, students have the opportunity to:
- Practice the art of storytelling using design, lighting, sound and image
- Attend seminars on media literacy and the history of media arts
- View and deconstruct films in roundtable discussions
- Master cameras, audio equipment, and digital editing systems
Almost 100% of PRO-TV Media Fellowship students go on to attend college and/or gain employment in the media industry. PRO-TV provides support throughout the college application process, and each year PRO-TV students are awarded numerous acceptances and scholarships. Recent grads are currently enrolled at schools as diverse as:
- NYU/Tisch School of the Arts – Lewis Rudin City Scholarship; University Scholars Program; New York Times Full Scholarship
- Claflin University – Emma Bowen Foundation Scholarship
- Kingsboro Community College – Future Latino Filmmakers Scholarship
- And many more, including Penn State University, Syracuse University, Emerson College, Ithaca College, Pace University, and SUNY/CUNY colleges.
While DCTV’s impact is measured nationally and internationally, its New York City-local roots remain strong. DCTV complements its own artistic achievements by working to extend the tools of television and electronic media production to a broader, more diverse set of artists. Toward this end, over the past 40 years DCTV has taught over 50,000 students, most of them members of low-income and minority communities, the essentials of television production. DCTV offers over 150 low-cost video and electronic media training workshops to 2,000 students a year. DCTV’s members also rely on DCTV’s facilities to produce new and innovative work that truly reflects the points of view of all constituents in our society.
The MASTER OF CEREMONIES for the groundbreaking ceremony will be DCTV Co-Founders/Co-Executive Directors Jon Alpert & Keiko Tsuno. Expected VIP Filmmakers and guests includes Michael Moore, Morgan Spurlock, Alex Gibney, Liz Garbus, Matthew O’Neill, Alexandra Pelosi, Sam Pollard, Alan and Susan Raymond, and Cáitrin McKiernan.
The cinema, expected to open in early 2015, will mean a significant expansion of DCTV’s public services to include theatrical distribution along with its already highly attended workshops, screenings, master classes and access to affordable equipment and studio rentals, making DCTV a central hub for documentary filmmakers. For more information on DCTV, its various programs and how to donate, please visit www.dctvnyc.org.