The following is a republished press release from The History Center in Tompkins County and NOT written by the Ithaca Voice … click here to submit community announcements directly to The Voice, or contact me at

ITHACA, NY — Join the History Center in Tompkins County on Thursday June 9th, 2016 at Cinemapolis for the event “Projecting Place: The Role of Local History in Documentaries.”

The evening will center around local screenwriters and producers discussing how they utilized local history resources to create documentaries. Each presenter will show clips from select films they have created to illustrate how the information they gathered from local historical documents was used.

They will share their challenges, their sense of discovery, and engage the audience to discuss ongoing initiatives that highlight our rich local heritage. You can purchase your ticket to this event for $5.00 by clicking here.

Austin Bunn is a writer, screenwriter, and professor. He is the author of the short story collection “The Brink”, and he wrote the script for Kill Your Darlings, with the film’s director John Krokidas, which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and won the International Days Prize at the Venice Film Festival.
His award-winning short documentaries, Lavender Hill and In the Hollow, have screened nationally and internationally at Frameline (SF), OutFest (LA), InsideOut (Toronto), Provincetown International Film Festival (MA), Sidewalk Film Festival (AL), Milwaukee Film Festival (WI), MEZIPATRA (Czechoslovakia), USN Expo (Italy), and elsewhere. He teaches screenwriting at Cornell University.

Bunn will show clips from In the Hollow and Lavender Hill.

Deborah C. Hoard has been a producer, director and writer at PhotoSynthesis Productions for thirty years and president since 2003. Her work is focused on education and social justice, and has won more than 200 national and international media awards.

Her recent documentary They Call It Myanmar screened in festivals worldwide, and was named “one of the top twelve docs of the year 2012” by Roger Ebert. She is currently producing a new documentary about Cambodia, and about to release a film about education in America entitled Re: Thinking. PhotoSynthesis Productions.

Hoard will show clips from Civil Warriors and Into the Land of Kalachakra 

Civil Warriors is a feature film that tells the story of twenty-six black men from Ithaca who enlisted in the US Colored Troops and fought in the Civil War. Their true story unfolds in a unique interweaving of historical images with the rhythm and energy of spoken word performance. Contemporary narration by Sean Eversley Bradwell guides us through the story and provides context. The film is based on a play by local historian Carol Kammen.

Into the Land of Kalachakra tells the story of the founding of the Dalai Lama’s Monastery in Ithaca, NY — his only Monastery outside of India. It was filmed during the Dalai Lama’s four day visit to Ithaca in 2007, when he came to bless the new Monastery buildings and speak to the public about the future of Tibetan Buddhism in the face of Chinese efforts to destroy it.

“Both films make extensive use of historical documents and archival images. I want to thank the History Center in particular for their help in finding materials for Civil Warriors.” – Deborah Hoard

Sue Perlgut formed CloseToHome Productions, in 2007, to reach a wide-ranging audience with videos that feature topical and socially relevant issues. She has completed four documentaries and videos, which include her most recent Connie Cook: A Documentary about Constance Cook who as a Republican Assemblywoman for New York’s 125th District authored legislation in 1970 that decriminalized abortion in New York State, which paved the way for Roe Vs. Wade in 1973.

Perlgut is the founder of the Senior Citizen Theatre Troupe of Lifelong, where she is the director/writer and at times performer with the ensemble. She is a past chair of the Tompkins County Tourism Board and is chair of the board of directors of Cinemapolis.

Perlgut will show clips from Connie Cook: A Documentary, 101 Ways to Retire-or Not!, and Beets and Beans: Living and Dying with Hospice.

Gossa Tsegayewas born and raised in Ethiopia came to the US in 1970. Graduated from Ithaca High in 1972, Ithaca College in 1976 with a degree in Television and Radio. And got my Masters in Communication  from Cornell in 1984. I have been making Documentary films since 1979.

Tsegaye will show clips from

  • Smile in the Wind: A Story of Migrant Workers in King Ferry
  • Dream Street on Buffalo Hill : A Story of Families on the Hill
  • Frederick Douglass from the Church to the Street
  • The Jungles Edge: A History of the Jungle on the West End
  • Unspoken Connection: A History of the Community Garden in Ithaca Growing Hope

Michael Smith

Michael Smith reports on politics and local news for the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached via email at, by cell at (607) 229-0885, or via Google Voice at (518) 650-3639.