Final Music Recording

The final details of Indelible Lalita are finally getting taken care of. On Wednesday we recorded the remaining music for the film with Brian Cass at Sounds Interesting Studio in Middleborough.

Carla Kihlstedt (playing pump organ above, but mostly playing violin and voice) and Geni Skendo did a fantastic job... helped by great music by Jorrit Dijsktra (maybe I'm biased, since he's my husband).

In January we'll do our sound mix, followed by the online. Can't wait!

Marie-Emmanuelle Hartness Joins Us

We're so pleased to have Marie-Emmanuelle Hartness joining us as consulting producer for Indelible Lalita. Marie is providing great feedback on cuts, and is helping with the film's distribution.

A specialist in the adaption of theater and film across multiple media and languages, Marie has been involved in films appearing in festivals of Cannes, Venice, Toronto, Prague, Paris, Clermont-Ferrand, and Locarno. Born in Paris, France, she completed research work at la Sorbonne in 2001, and has accumulated experience in various independent multimedia production formats, including screenwriting, literature, translation, television, theater and film. She has recently produced Ross McElwee’s new film Photographic Memory, which premiered at the 2011 Venice Biennale.

College Success for Students in Hidalgo, TX

School leaders in Hidalgo, Texas - a rural district of about 4,000 students near the Mexican border - made a commitment in 2005: all of their students would earn college credits before graduating from high school. Working with the Early College High School Initiative at Jobs for the Future (funded in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation), they created a school system that focuses on preparing students for college - including English language learners, under-performing students, and those whose parents have little education themselves.

The district partners with local colleges, provides extensive support for individual students, and challenges students to take college-level courses. In the process, students are exposed to a "college-going culture," which eases their transition to higher education upon graduation.

By 2010, the first class graduated from Hidalgo Early College High School - two thirds of them with a semester or more of college credit. According to Jobs for the Future, Hidalgo's success is becoming a model for school districts around the country. There are currently 230 early college schools serving 50,000 students around the country.

I have just finished editing a video from existing material that gives a voice to the students' experience at this school. The video will be part of the Hidalgo Early College District Toolkit, designed to help other schools replicate Hidalgo's vision of college success for all.