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Bread & Roses Blog

News and information from Bread & Roses, a non-profit organization that presents live music to bring hope, healing and joy to the community.

Marianna August & Her Jazz Pals Entertain at the Marin Senior Fair for Bread & Roses

Marianna_August_at_VA_Hostpital_SFWhen Marianna August & Her Jazz Pals took the stage at this year’s Marin Senior Information Fair on October 24 at the Marin Exhibit Hall in San Rafael on behalf of Bread & Roses, many people were singing along and tapping toes to familiar songs like Night and Day and Old Devil Moon. Vocalist Marianna spoke about Bread & Roses in a heart-felt way when she asked  "Has anyone had a recent hip or knee replacement and spent time in a local convalescent center? If so, you were likely to have been entertained with live music from Bread & Roses."

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Bread & Roses on NBC Bay Area Proud

Garvin Thomas of NBC Bay Area Proud interviewed Bread & Roses performer Judy Lagomarsino (AKA Miss Kitty) for their Bay Area Proud series. After filming a Bread & Roses show at BAHIA in Berkeley, he talked to Judy about her life as a performer and how she became interested in giving back through her music. We couldn't be more proud of Judy, and grateful to Garvin for spreading the word!

 

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Alive Inside Video Trailer - Music Reconnects Us to 'Our Most Alive Selves'

As highlighted in the feature story of our Fall 2012 newsletter, the rough cut trailer of the upcoming documentary, Alive Inside, provides a compelling insight into the power of music to help those with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease reconnect to their memories and most alive selves. We hope you will enjoy the video. We look forward to hearing from you about the ways in which you have seen music, and in particular, live music, reconnect individuals of all ages to their hearts, minds and spirits.

 

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Enthusiasm a Hallmark of Developmentally Disabled Audiences

Bread & Roses serves a variety of developmentally disabled audiences around the Bay Area and our performers always tell us that their exceptionally enthusiastic response is an unforgettable experience for them.  Our friends at audiences like The Cedars of Marin or Las Trampas in Oakland love to dance and sing along to familiar songs. They show their great appreciation through a direct, immediate and heartfelt response to the music.  They always respond with great affection to the connection provided by live performance.
 

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Bread & Roses Performer Jimmy Dillon with friend at The Cedars of Marin. Photo by Peter Merts, Courtesy of Bread & Roses  

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Share Your Reviews of Bread & Roses on Great Nonprofits Website

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Bread & Roses is honored to be listed as a featured nonprofit on the Great Nonprofits website. We were also grateful to be included in their recent blog post about the top ten volunteer opportunities in San Francisco.

One of our client contacts had the following to say in a review posted on the site:

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Hats Off To Our Friends At the Kate Wolf Festival

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The Kate Wolf Festival continues its annual tradition of presenting top notch acoustic music. Held the last weekend in June at Wavy Gravy's Black Oak Ranch in Mendocino, the festival honors Kate Wolf, the singer-songwriter who re-popularized folk music in Northern CA in the 70’s.  She died in 1986 of leukemia.  Her music lives on not only with the festival, and also at Bread & Roses institutional shows where her song “Give Yourself To Love” remains a favorite.

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Transcendence Theatre Brings Broadway to the Veterans Home

Stephan Stubbins on Broadway For a wheelchair-bound senior at the Veterans Home in Yountville, it can seem like an impossible distance to travel from Napa to New York City to see the bright lights of Broadway.  But here it was -- songs from the magical production of "Broadway Under the Stars" in their own Holderman Hall. 

Many seniors who live in institutional settings have very limited mobility and find it difficult to get around. One of the great benefits that Bread & Roses brings to its isolated audiences is a live cultural experience that would be challenging for them to enjoy any other way.

The Transcendence Theatre Company’s recent production of “Broadway Under the Stars” in Glen Ellen is a great example. Last December, Bread & Roses brought its director (and one of its principal stars) to perform for close to a hundred disabled elderly veterans almost all in wheelchairs.  Imagine their pleasure at seeing Stephan Stubbins, who until recently has performed most often on the stages of musical theatres in New York and Los Angeles. 

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The Hipwaders Wow the Children at BAHIA in Berkeley

A story about a Bread & Roses institutional show on July 31, 2012 by Aidan Nelson

Hipwaders Concert

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“What Will Inspire You?”

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It was a thrill for us to see a full-page ad from the Marin Community Foundation (MCF) in both San Francisco Magazine and Marin Magazine featuring Bread & Roses.  Central to the ad is this inspiring quote from Bread & Roses supporter and former board chair Susan Gilardi:

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Happy 100th Birthday to Woody Guthrie

Woody Guthrie

Woody Guthrie would have been one-hundred-years-old on Saturday July 14. The iconic troubadour was a beloved performer during a challenging time in our nation’s history and his songs continue to have relevance today.

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Honoring Kathi Goldmark: A Truly Irrepressible Spirit

Honoring Kathi Goldmark

Cover of Kathi Goldmark's Memorial Program June 25, 2012 

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Performing Live Music Helps To Ease Loneliness of Seniors

A recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle “Loneliness Lethal for Seniors” talks about results from a new UCSF study that finds older people who are lonely are more likely to experience a decline in health.

Bread & Roses performer Barbara Dane, an 85-year-old resident of Oakland, was quoted in the article as saying many older adults need to take more responsibility for their own social lives.  As her late husband’s primary caregiver, Barbara had to take some time off from a 50-year career as a jazz singer. After he died, she realized how very important it was to maintain her active and varied social life as a performer.

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Remembering David Lescht of Outside In

In the mid 1990s in Santa Fe, New Mexico, David Lescht founded and directed Outside In, a nonprofit organization similar to Bread & Roses.  His niece, Stacey Lescht of Corte Madera, came by the office recently to let us know of his unexpected death. She wanted to be sure we knew how much Bread & Roses and our founder, the late Mimi Fariña, had meant to him ..    

A recent article in the Santa Fe-New Mexican mentioned that David met Mimi when the rock group he managed called The Brotherhood Band did a concert for Bread & Roses at a Bay Area juvenile detention center. David kept in touch with Mimi and was inspired by her example to start an organization in Santa Fe to bring music to those isolated in detention facilities, hospitals, convalescent centers and other institutions.  

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Support Bread & Roses by "Going Local"

Did you know that you can help Bread & Roses while at the same time supporting the local farmers and small businesses in Marin? Simply shop at Mill Valley Market. Through their “Shop and Give” program, Mill Valley Market will donate 2% of your total purchase to the nonprofit of your choice. Bread & Roses has been a beneficiary of this program since 2007, and we are grateful to Mill Valley Market for their support and generosity over the years.

Mill Valley Market is located in Mill Valley at 12 Corte Madera Avenue. It is a third-generation, family-run market that supports local vendors and grows and sells its own produce from farms up in Sonoma County. All of their produce, eggs and meat are fresh, organic and of the highest quality. For more information, check out their website. You can also find a recent article in the Pacific Sun’s Marinivore Magazine that features Mill Valley Market.

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Golden Gate Brass Band "Musical Bridges" Tribute

With musicians playing trombones, trumpets, flugel horns, cornets, euphoniums, tubas and french horns, it’s a rare thing to hear a live 14-piece brass band.   When the concert is a Musical Bridges tribute by the Golden Gate Brass Band for the 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge (1937-2012), it is truly a “once in a blue moon” opportunity.  

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From the Archives: Happy Birthday Mimi Fariña

Today, April 30, 2012, our founder Mimi Fariña would have been 67-years-old.  When she died of cancer in 2001, she was way too young to leave us.  Mimi’s great gift is the strong legacy she left at Bread & Roses.

On this anniversary of her birthday, we appreciate all who continue to support our mission of hope and healing through live music. If you would like to join the Mimi Fariña Founder's Circle, please make a donation in her honor today.

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Reflections on "Take Heart," the March 22 Concert to Benefit Bread & Roses.

The Board and Staff of Bread & Roses would like to thank all of the performers, volunteers, donors and sponsors who participated in our March 22 benefit concert, "Take Heart." We couldn't have done it without your support. And what a night it was, complete with dinner, music and dancing! The following is a slideshow of photos taken at the event:

All photos by Ken Friedman, courtesy of Bread & Roses.

If you attended the event, please leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts.

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Judy Collins Recalls Origin of “Bread and Roses” Song

In Singing Lessons: A Memoir of Love, Loss, Hope and Healing (c. 1998 p. 174) Judy Collins recalls looking for songs for an album project in 1976.

“After the death of her husband, Dick Fariña, Mimi Fariña, Joan Baez’s younger sister, had started a nonprofit organization in San Francisco called Bread & Roses, to provide free entertainment for people in homes, jails and hospitals in the Bay Area. She wrote the “Bread and Roses” melody to a poem by James Oppenheim and I recorded it, using a choir of voices in a church in New York.”  

In her liner notes for the album, also titled Bread & Roses Judy said:“Songs come from many places, unexpectedly, amazingly.”  She relayed how Mimi had sent her a copy of the “Bread and Roses” poem. She thought it so beautiful that she asked her to set it to music. Her sister Holly Ann then designed a Bread and Roses tapestry piece featuring a single rose and wove it using hand-dyed yarns which was then used as the art for the inside album cover.      

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Notes From the Field: Peter Merts on Working with Bread & Roses

Photographer Peter Merts recently posted a blog about his volunteer work for Bread & Roses on Photo Philanthropy’s website: “Notes From the Field: Peter Merts on Working with Bread & Roses.”

Nicolas Bearde at Mission YMCA, photo courtesy of Peter MertsWe are so grateful that Peter Merts has been actively documenting our work for the past ten years.  He has been involved in supporting Bread & Roses for over thirty years having worked with Mimi Fariña as an event coordinator in the late 70s and early 80s.    We are truly blessed to have his continuing contributions; the beautiful images that help us tell our story in so many ways.

Take our upcoming benefit on Match 22 at the Regency Ballroom for example.  Peter’s images grace our invitation and program.  His  photos also make up a large part of the slide show we will be screening for the first time at the event showing the power of the institutional shows recently performed by our benefit musicians. 

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Purchase Your Tickets Today!!

We are thrilled to announce Take Heart the exciting and eclectic 2012 Concert to Benefit Bread & Roses. The show will be held on March 22 at the historic Regency Ballroom in San Francisco, and will feature an extraordinary lineup of some of the Bay Area’s hottest local artists, all of whom inspire our audiences year-round.

The concert will be big, bold and brilliant – ranging from blues and jazz to pop and Broadway show tunes. Some of our featured artists include:

Mitch Woods and his Rocket 88s. Mitch is described as “one of the top boogie piano men around” by Dan Aquilante of the New York Post. Mitch Woods and his Rocket 88s will fill the room with their jumpin’ and jivin’, pumpin’ and poundin’, New Orleans rhythm and blues “rock-a-boogie” magic.

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