Video Club & Camera Club to Photograph Centenarians

An estimated 20 Village centenarians will be photographed and interviewed on video this winter by the Camera Club and the Video Club as part of the Thrive Centenarian Photo Project, co-sponsored by The Thrive Project with assistance from the Recreation Department. Lucy Parker, Video Club Publicity Director, and still photographer Mark Rabinowitz, immediate Past-President of the Camera Club, co-head the undertaking. The Village has more than 70 residents who are over 100.

The project was inspired by Czech photographer Jan Langer’s similar portrait series, “Faces of Century.” Each participating centenarian will be asked to provide a photo of him/herself as a young adult. The project will then take a new portrait of each participant, attempting to match the older photos in pose and expression.

The photos above are from the Czech series, of Antonin Kovar at age 25 and 102..

During February and March, shooting will be done in the Video Studio on Friday mornings from 10 am to noon, whenever possible. In some cases, the camera team may go to the centenarians. Mark will take the portraits as well as still photos during the interviews. Plans call for one or more exhibitions of the young-old portraits in the spring of 2019, plus an online exhibit and a half-hour video of participant interviews to be broadcast on Village Television.

The project’s two video interviewers will be familiar to viewers of Village Television, since both of them host or co-host regular TV shows. They are Cyndee Whitney (“Discovering Laguna Woods”) and Judy Saxon {“Write Now”). Both are Video Club members. Other Video Club members participating so far include Betsy Martin, who heads up shoot logistics; Jeanne Mayer, make-up; and Paul Kachaturian, video camera. Betsy is working with Ryna Rothberg, head of The Towers governing board, where several centenarian residents have expressed interest.

“A letter was sent to all Village centenarians last fall by Brian Gruner, VMS Recreation and Special Events Director, informing them of the project,” explains Lucy, adding, “That drew five confirmed participants, and we have leads on several others. The Recreation staff may also phone the centenarians to recruit participants, and we plan to reach out through the Globe.” Mark and Lucy have been interviewed twice about the project by Ken Goldenberg on the Village Television news show, “This Day.” Recreation Department staffer Daniel Alcala is providing support to the Centenarian Project team.

Until now, the three-year-old Thrive Project, founded by GRF President Beth Perek, has been best known to Village residents through “The Thrive Show” on Village Television, produced by resident and professional videographer Scott Marvel. More than 30 shows in the on-going series have introduced viewers to residents who are thriving in our community.

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