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Arts Fridays brings you student films, “The Little Mermaid” from the San Francisco ballet

Posted on 15 Dec 2011

AETN Arts Fridays on December 16 brings you Arkansas student films as part of our Student Selects project at 6:30 p.m. followed by PBS Arts from San Francisco “Great Performances: The Little Mermaid From the San Francisco Ballet” at 9 p.m. Friday’s featured films are produced as part of Project VoiceScape, that helps youth have the opportunity to learn valuable filmmaking skills and about themselves.

Now in its sixth year, “Student Selects” is an annual event that grants the state’s kindergarten through 12th grade students the opportunity to submit their film and video handiwork for possible broadcast on AETN, streaming on www.aetn.org and screening at the Little Rock Film Festival.   “Student Selects 2012” is open and accepting entries now until April 6, 2012. 

Student films include:

  • “Quality of Opportunity” by the Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site Youth Leadership Academy. Students examine the evolution of the Little Rock Central High School neighborhood, a place immortalized as a key location in the civil rights movement, tainted by violence and disrepair, but now in the midst of a revival. The film focuses on some of the individuals that are making a difference to change the perception of the historic area from “hood to neighborhood.”
  • “Life at Hamilton” by the William L. Hamilton Learning Academy, Little Rock. A group of students take an unflinching look at their daily learning environment at an inner-city alternative school. This film chronicles the students’ own metamorphosis of attitudes as they discover through interviews with staff and students the many positive efforts at work all around the school.
  • “Dreaming for Justice” by the Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site Youth Leadership Academy. A Hispanic immigrant student looks at the monumental challenge facing others in a situation much like his own. Without the needed legislation, many undocumented students seeking higher education are left without needed financial assistance or legal work, or worse – facing potential deportation.

The Little Mermaid is something to see – based on the original story, not the cartoon version, it is breathtaking, heartbreaking and an absolute mesmerizing experience.  I have to say, I am a fan of the ballet in person…just had a lovely time with my daughter at The Nutcracker in Little Rock this week.  But you know…that’s something we just can’t do too often.  But guess what?  PBS is free and as close as my couch with easy access to pretzels and hot chocolate. The costumes are out of this world….with the mermaid’s swishy, flowing tail that the dance knows exactly how to flutter and shimmy as she is picked up and thrown around…the muted colors and at times slightly unnerving characters kept me glued to the screen for some time.  I may keep my little ballet dancer up late to catch a glimpse.  If The Nutcracker was any clue, she’ll be glued right along with me…snuggled up in pj’s with snacks. 

TUNE in Friday, Dec. 16

  • 6:30 p.m. “Student Selects: A Young Filmmakers Showcase 2011”
  • 9 p.m. PBS Arts from San Francisco “Great Performances: The Little Mermaid From the San Francisco Ballet”


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