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Summer Workshop with Film Critic David Kanowsky

Sedona AZ (July 6, 2012) – Yavapai College’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) of Sedona and Verde Valley is a dynamic organization within Yavapai College created to meet the needs of intellectually active mature adults. What makes OLLI a unique learning experience is the lack of pressure – no tests, grades, or papers. It is a warm gathering of people who are endlessly curious and love to learn.

This summer, OLLI has launched a summer camp for adults and on July 11, 2012 local film critic David Kanowsky will be teaching a summer camp class entitled, “The Real in the Reel.”

Born and raised in the South Bronx in New York, Kanowsky is the second of six children. According to Kanowsky, “My birth year was 1933 — the heart of the Great Depression — and I can recall some hard times when I was as young as five or six years. We emerged from depression era poverty to the typical average lower middle class as I migrated through preteen years and my teens in the 1940s and the 1950s.”

Kanowsky shares that an aptitude for math and science enabled him to attend Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, one of the three college preparatory New York City high schools. Later, he attended the City College of New York tuition-free as a city resident. After an education hiatus, taken to better understand why he was attending school at all, he shares, “I was in a New York hospital for minor surgery and that’s where I met the student nurse who became the other half of me. Ruth and I were married in 1956.”

After a year of marriage Ruth, now an RN, inspired Kanowsky to finish college. He earned an engineering degree in 1960 but most of his adult career was spent in the field of computer programming, systems design, and corporate management.

Kanowsky and Ruth lived in a suburb of New York for over forty years. The couple retired in the 1990’s and scoured the entire nation for over two years looking for a place to live out their golden years. It was then that they found Cottonwood Ranch in Arizona. 

What of Kanowsky’s love of movies? Kanowsky comments, “Movies have always been important to me as entertainment and as a means of broadening my awareness of the world around me. I was a prodigious reader of books, and in the 1960s through the 1990s, Ruth and I made frequent trips to Manhattan for the theater and the opera. We both loved those experiences but movies always made the biggest impact on my consciousness.”

When did Kanowsky begin to write movie reviews? Kanowsky says he was initiated into the industry in 1999, after he and his wife were living in Cottonwood for about six months. “First, I love movies and I see a lot of them. Second, I am able to write about movies giving my opinion of a film. Third, my new next-door neighbor and friend was the publisher of the Verde Independent!”

Kanowsky’s favorite movies? In no particular order they are, he says, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Midnight in Paris and Radio Days from Woody Allen, Casablanca, City Lights by Charlie Chaplin, On the Waterfront, The Godfather, The Sting, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Big Sleep, Desk Set, Jeremiah Johnson, and The Thief of Bagdad. 

The Reel in the Real is a one day OLLI summer camp workshop offered Wednesday, July 11, 2012 from 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. in the Cottonwood Library public meeting room. Kanowsky promises a discussion of how movies – fictional, fact-based, or fantastic – touch ones sensibilities.

Woody Allen’s 1985 masterwork, The Purple Rose of Cairo, will be used by Kanowsky to drive the conversation as the class facilitator. Space is still available for this event and other summer camp activities. For more OLLI information, call 928-649-4275 or visit www.yc.edu/lifelonglearners.

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  1. Thank you very much! I shared the link on Facebook. I appreciate that reminder. Best wishes.

  2. The July YC OLLI sessions kicks off with a class on the Big Band Era. Presented in the Beaver Creek School’s board room, this learning group will explore the big band music of the 1930s and 40s through recorded examples, video excerpts, and discussion of the ethnic and cultural characteristics of the era. Facilitator Sy Brandon is a composer, poet, author, and retired professor of music. Each class will present a different facet of the era, including jazz and popular music leading up to the Big Band Era; Big Bands in the 1930’s; Big Band during war; and Big Band music in the 1950’s.

    Now at class maximum capacity, the Mystery of Dreams participants will receive information on the use of dreams as a means of acquiring a deeper understanding of events in each participant’s life. The emphasis of this learning group is helping individuals become the whole, healthy person they are meant to be. Facilitator Joan Forest is a retired Marriage, Family, and Child Therapist. She spent two summers in Switzerland studying at the Jung Institute. She has done much of her own work in Jungian analysis and breath work sessions. One of her predominant interests is traveling and studying spiritual practices past and present.

    The very timely class Ranking of the Presidents: Presidential Leadership and the Constitution, presented at the Cottonwood Library, will provoke participants into discussion on some of our presidents, their leadership and the Constitution, and how “experts” rank the presidents. Facilitator Joe Stack is a retired human resources manager who specialized in leadership training, and is an experienced OLLI facilitator with a passion for history.

    In Tarot for 2012, members will learn the basics of the art of Tarot in preparation for December 12, 2012. Facilitator William Dewhirst invites one and all to this fun class. He has been teaching and practicing Metaphysics for over 30 years. His specialty is Tarot and he has helped many people to use this ancient art to better their lives and gain new insight.

    It is not too late to register. These events are open to both OLLI members and non-OLLI members for very low fees. Call the OLLI office at 928-649-4275 to find out more information or stop by the Sedona Center at Yavapai College at 4215 Arts Village Drive, Sedona. Tell us that you read it in the Sedona Eye!

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