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New York playwright/film historian Meir Z. Ribalow to present 'How Hollywood portrays Arkansas' Feb. 18, two additional lectures Feb. 19

Jan. 28, 2010 -- What is your favorite movie with an Arkansas flavor? “A Face in the Crowd?”  “White Lighting?” “The Legend of Boggy Creek?” “Walk the Line?” “Shotgun Stories?”  An Arkansan audience will have a chance to compare favorites with noted film historian Meir Z. Ribalow after his free public lecture, “How Hollywood portrays Arkansas—the three most representative films,” Thursday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m. in ASU’s Drama Theatre, Fowler Center, 201 Olympic Drive, Jonesboro. Ribalow’s lecture is sponsored by the Heritage Studies PhD program and the Department of Theatre at ASU.

Gary Jones Films in Little Rock is providing three DVDs--copies of each film Ribalow will discuss in his lecture--and audience members will have a chance to win a copy of one of the three movies.  What are the three films? Audience members will have to attend Ribalow's talk to learn the titles and have a chance to win.

During his visit to ASU-Jonesboro, Ribalow will make two additional public presentations on Friday, Feb. 19. First, he will read from his own work and that of the New River Dramatists at 11 a.m. in the Spring River room of the Reng Student Services Center/Student Union. He will present a talk at 2 p.m. in the Drama Theatre, Fowler Center, about his career as a playwright and director, both regionally and in New York and London.

Ribalow is artis
t-in-residence at Fordham University in New York City, where he serves as the artistic director of New River Dramatists and teaches screenwriting and courses on American film. He has appeared in numerous media interviews about American cinema, both on television and in special-feature documentaries on DVD.   

Ribalow is best known for his playwriting and stage directing, with actors including Christopher Walken, Raul Julia, Zero Mostel, Burgess Meredith, Holly Hunter, Ellen Barkin, Christopher Reeve, and Ruby Dee.  He directed “Children Of the Sun,” a world premiere by Pulitzer Prize winner N. Scott Momaday at the Kennedy Center in Washington.

Ribalow’s new play, “The Nature of the Universe,” was on Broadway at the Neil Simon Theatre as a charity benefit gala, with a cast including Blythe Danner, Brian Dennehy, and Patricia Randell. He has written four optioned screenplays, he has won a BMI Award for musical lyrics, and he was commissioned to write the musical theatre piece “Seven Deadly Sins,” which was presented in Charlotte, N.C.  in 2005.

Ribalow was artistic director of the American Repertory Company for its two acclaimed seasons in London, and was for several years Joseph Papp’s production associate at the New York Shakespeare Festival, where he coordinated new play development and directed several plays. He also served for many years as vice president of the Creative Coalition with president Alec Baldwin. As the International Arts Coordinator for the Global Forum, he worked with Mikhail Gorbachev, Thor Heyerdahl, Robert Redford and the Dalai Lama. Learn more about Meir Ribalow online.
For more information, contact Dr. Clyde Milner (, director, the Heritage Studies PhD program, and professor of history, at (870) 972-3509.


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