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Holiday Films at the Exploratorium

For Immediate Release:
October 15, 2012

Media Available
Jenny Slafkosky (415) 528-4367

Holiday Films at the Exploratorium

Dylan Thomas’s A Child’s Christmas in Wales (Saturday, December 22)
Plus: The Annual Holiday Animation Film Festival (Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - Tuesday, January 1, 2013) At Exploratorium

[caption id="attachment_6895" align="alignleft" width="288" caption="Scene from "A Child's Christmas in Wales," (1963)"][/caption]

Don’t miss the sound of Dylan Thomas’s voice on Saturday, December 22, when the Exploratorium screens  A Child’s Christmas in Wales (1963). Directed by Marvin Lightner, this film features a story written and narrated by Dylan Thomas, one that follows a boy’s Christmas time memories in Wales. This annual holiday screening takes place at 2 pm in the Exploratorium’s McBean Theater.  The cinematic holiday festivities continue with the Holiday Animation Film Festival, December 26-January 1, at noon, 2 and 4 pm, also in the McBean Theater. The Annual Holiday Animation Festival gives a rousing send-off to 2012 (and is one of many farewell events to the Exploratorium in the Palace of Fine Arts) with Exploratorium favorites old and new such as Academy Award winning Sour Death Balls by Jessica Yu. All screenings are included in the price of admission to the Exploratorium.

Saturday, December 22, 2012
Holiday Memories: A Child's Christmas in Wales, White Out and The Sweater
McBean Theater at 2pm

Classic and reminiscent stories from mid-20th century small town worlds are conveyed through the eyes of childhood. Colorful animation and black and white still images transforms these northern lands of snow and winter cold into youthful adventures, surprises, disappointments, and holiday play.

The Sweater (1980, 10 min), by Sheldon Cohen, animates a story by Roch Carrier set in rural Québec during the 1940s, when Rocket Richard was the Montreal Canadiens’ greatest star. This funny, poignant tale recalls a boy’s passion for playing hockey and the perils of wearing the wrong team jersey.

White Out (2007, 3 min), by Jeff Scher, captures the magic of snow with a painterly cascade of skiers and skaters crossing a winter landscape to music by Shay Lynch. The hand drawn and painted animation on normal scraps of paper augments the intimate warmth illustrated in time with family and friends in a winter wonderland.

Dylan Thomas’ A Child’s Christmas in Wales (1963, 26 min 16mm) offers an intimate glimpse of another era, preserved through old photographs and the poet’s resonant memories of childhood and snow. Produced, directed, and photographed by Marvin Lightner with narration from Thomas’ original
recording. This is a rare 16mm film print. There are no DVDs for sale.

Holiday Animation Film Festival
McBean Theater at Noon, 2 and 4 pm
Wednesday through Tuesday, December 26, 2012-January 1, 2013

[caption id="attachment_6897" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Still from "Western Spaghetti," (2008) by PES"]Still from "Spaghetti Western," (2008) by PES [/caption]

This round up of animated shorts utilizes computers, stop-motion and other animation techniques to capture the hilarity in several playful scenarios. Among the films to be screened are these engaging shorts:

Sour Death Balls (1993, 4 min.) by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Jessica Yu, offers a humorous and quirky look at how people from all ages and backgrounds react to extremely sour candy. Filmed in black and white in front of a blank wall, the simplicity makes the subject’s outrageous expressions stand out.

White Out (2007, 3 min.) by Jeff Scher, captures the magic of snow with a painterly cascade of skiers and skaters crossing a winter landscape to music by Shay Lynch. The hand drawn and painted animation on normal scraps of paper augments the intimate warmth illustrated in time with family and friends in a winter wonderland.

Western Spaghetti (2008, 2 min.) by PES, is a brilliant stop-motion animation of a surprising cooking demonstration. Using common objects in inventive ways, the film takes the viewer into an alternate world where imagination is the only limit when it comes to what’s for dinner.

Dalhia (2009, 3 min.) by Michael Langan creates a moving portrait of the bustle and permanence of a city.  Dahlia juxtaposes the stable forms and patterns of life with the frenetic behavior of humanity, set to a driving score of vocal percussion.

Mobile by Verena Fels (2010, 7 min.) Tells the simple story of distances two stuffed animals go to be together, even if it means turning their world upside down.

Fetch (2001, 5 min.), by Nina Paley, is a funny exploration of space involving an animated dog chasing a ball to a lively soundtrack by Nik Phelps and The Sprocket Ensemble.

The Exploratorium's Cinema Arts Program is funded in part by the Louis Goldblatt Memorial Fund and by a grant from Grants for the Arts/San Francisco Hotel Tax Fund.

Hours of Operation & New Evening Hours
Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm;  every Thursday evening adults only (ages 18 and up) 6pm-10pm.

$29 for adults, with lower rates for SF Bay Area residents, youth, seniors, students, teachers and the disabled. Tickets available at the door and advance tickets available online at www.exploratorium.edu/visit/tickets.

Getting Here
The Exploratorium is easily accessible by public transit. Convenient parking is available nearby. For more information, visit www.exploratorium.edu/visit/location-directions

About the Exploratorium
The Exploratorium is the global leader in informal learning, igniting curiosity and inspiring creativity in people of all ages. The world-renowned science museum creates original, interactive exhibits, on display at more than 1,000 science centers, museums and public spaces around the world. Dedicated to education reform in and out of the classroom, the Exploratorium is a premier professional development center for educators and a creator of award-winning educational resources. Since 1969, the Exploratorium has influenced generations of entrepreneurs, artists, scientists, teachers, students, children, museum professionals and everyday doers, reaching nearly 180 million people annually from around the globe. On April 17, 2013, the Exploratorium opened at Pier 15 in the heart of San Francisco's Embarcadero, where it will celebrate a new era of experiences that encourage critical thinking and awaken wonder for generations to come. For more information, visit www.exploratorium.edu/visit.

Pier 15
San Francisco
California 94111
(415) 528-4444 telephone

Contact Us:
Jenny Slafkosky (415) 528-4367