Feature photo- Film Still, Mother Dot’s Philadelphia (Director: Ryan Saunders and Malkia Lydia) featured in Philadelphia Stories (Season 2, Episode 4); Pictured: Dottie Smith Gayle; Retrospective Re-Broadcast Date: Thursday, February 24, 2021
-Courtesy of Broad Street Communications
Starting on October 28, PhillyCAM – the community media center that trains Philadelphians in media production and airs original content on Philadelphia’s public access television and WPPM 106.5 FM – will present Philadelphia Stories RETROSPECTIVE: A 20th Anniversary Look Back celebrating this ambitious television series that “told stories as unique as the city itself” and broadcast them on local public television station.
Philadelphia Stories, which aired on WYBE TV 35 for eight seasons from 2001 to 2011, chronicled our city’s rich cultural fabric and imagined futures through the eyes of independent filmmakers and community storytellers. It shined a spotlight on the local filmmakers, featured all genres of filmmaking, gave some first time filmmakers a launch pad and contributed to making Philadelphia a viable place for media artists to call home.
Now, 20 years later, PhillyCAM, with support from the Independence Public Media Foundation, is offering Philadelphians the opportunity to experience the evolution of our city and our stories over the last two decades through the time capsule that is Philadelphia Stories.
“The works featured in Philadelphia Stories continue to resonate, some even feel like they could have been made today,” said Gretjen Clausing, Executive Director of PhillyCAM. “Over the next five months, we want to introduce new audiences to this work and engage people in conversations about the topics and issues these films raise.”
Philadelphia Stories producer/curator Hébert Peck reflected recently that “Philadelphia Stories represents a library of important works one can go to learn and calculate your next step whether you’re interested in environmental/climate issues, human rights issues, social justice. And then there were many pieces that just talked about love … the entire human experience.”
Every Thursday at 8:30 p.m. ET from Oct 28, 2021 to March 31, 2022, PhillyCAM will air a Philadelphia Stories episode. Tune in on Xfinity channels 66/966HD/967, Verizon channels 29/30, Roku, Apple TV, or online.
Three days of events, presented in conjunction with PhillyCAM’s PPM FEST, will launch the retrospective, and offer opportunities for filmmakers to connect and lift up the civic importance of “Philadelphia Stories.”
Wednesday October 27
1 :00 – 2:00 p.m.: Telling Philly Stories — a conversation with local filmmakers Shameka Sawyer (5 Shorts), Ted Passon (Philly DA) and Michelle Angela Ortiz (Las madres de Berks) and moderated by Rashid Zakat about how they draw inspiration from our city and what responsibility they have as storytellers to their fellow Philadelphians.
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.: Impact Producing 101: Strategies for Mediamakers
A workshop for filmmakers to learn how to strategically use films and other media to facilitate change within their communities. Sponsored by Doc Society. Learn More.
Thursday October 28
8:30-10:30 p.m.: A conversation with Hébert Peck, producer of the series, followed by the Retrospective launch featuring a showcase of short works by Maori Karmael Holmes, Nadine Patterson, Anula Shetty, Michael O’Reilly, Frances McElroy and others.
Saturday October 30
3:00 -7:00 p.m. Virtual reality pop-up in a garden in the Norris Square neighborhood, celebrating African heritage and the West African diaspora in Puerto Rican culture. At the Villa Africána Colobó Garden, 2263 Palethorp Street.
Full schedule: https://phillycam.org/philly-stories-tvbroadcast-schedule
Philadelphia Stories RETROSPECTIVE: A 20th Anniversary Look Back is made possible with support from the Independence Public Media Foundation. Learn more.
PhillyCAM programs are supported by grants from Comcast and Verizon cable franchise agreements, Independence Public Media Foundation, Philadelphia Foundation, Wyncote Foundation, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and Resolve Philly, and by donations from individual contributors.
PhillyCAM is the non-profit designated by the City of Philadelphia to operate its public access television network (Xfinity 66/966HD/967 and Verizon Fios 29/30). PhillyCAM also operates a low-power community radio station, WPPM-FM, which reaches about 800,000 people throughout the Philadelphia region. It’s a community media center that brings together the people of Philadelphia to make and share media that promotes creative expression, democratic values and civic participation. PhillyCAM teaches people to create high-quality, non-commercial media. PhillyCAM distributes nearly 100 hours of local programming each week on radio and television. The non-profit currently has more than 500 members made up of an engaged constituency of people inclusive of all genders, sexualities, religions, abilities, socio-economic levels, and ethnicities. The majority of members are artists, activists, educators, students, returning citizens, professionals, youth, and retirees. Visit https://phillycam.org.