Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Sonic Stocking Stuffer

As we begin gathering for our new NPR series about the secret life of girls around the world we thought we'd share a work in progress.
Pat Cadigan, a science fiction writer, heard about our project and sent us this short story memory inspired by the original 1951 version of The Day the Earth Stood Still.

Listen to Pat's story

As the tide turns on 2008, we
thank you for making a tax-deductible contribution to The Kitchen Sisters Productions. Your gifts and support have helped create our Peabody Award winning series. If you haven't had a chance to contribute this year you can do so now here.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

With a little help from our friends...

Dear Friends,

The other day we were forwarded this entry that Jake recently wrote on his blog:

“I have always given during food drives but it didn’t become my cause until October 8, 2004 when I heard The Kitchen Sisters’ story "An Unexpected Kitchen the George Foreman Grill" on NPR. I was crying by the end of this story. I have never looked at George Foreman, his grill — or hunger — the same way again.” — Jake

We don’t know Jake, but he was sharing his passion to end hunger with his online community. What had inspired him? A Kitchen Sisters story that aired on NPR four years ago and that continues to have a vast, grass roots, ever-expanding life online.

We are writing because we need your help to continue creating stories that reach out and inspire this kind of action and understanding.

As independent producers, not NPR staff, we support our work through grants and donations from listeners like you. Many of you have heard about the recent layoffs at NPR. We too are being hit hard by this financial crisis that has severely impacted our fundraising efforts. Only with your help, can we continue creating in-depth, documentary stories that reach 14 million people on-air and countless people online.

If every person who receives this email donates just $25,
it would greatly support our work through the next year. Your donation is tax-deductible.
This year, every penny you give is matched by the NEA, which has given a grant to launch our new series exploring the secret lives of girls around the world — girls and the women they become.

We are also working on a rich new collection of Hidden Kitchens including a look at Inauguration Day communal potlucks where Americans will come together over casseroles and onion dip to begin a new era in American politics.

We are in the midst of working to produce a Broadway musical based on our story about the first all girl radio station in the nation, WHER: 1000 Beautiful Watts. And we are collaborating with the Cabrillo Music Festival and conductor Marin Alsop on a multi-media project based on our secret life of girls series to premiere in 2012.

We are also continuing our successful internship and mentoring program for young people and workshops for emerging producers. Your donations make this work possible.

We would like to take this moment at year’s end to thank you for being part of our community. However you have participated, as a donor, interviewee, advisor, collaborator, listener ... we're grateful. We cannot do this work without your ongoing support.

We hope you will give what you can this year to help us in our efforts to build community through storytelling and to keep the media vital, relevant and human.

High Hopes and Peace in the New Year,

Nikki Silva & Davia Nelson
The Kitchen Sisters

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Kidney Party

Tonight, our friends in Cedar Park, Texas are gathering at the home of Jim and Carole Wallace for the 11th Annual Kidney Party, held every December 8th to celebrate Jim's kidney transplant. Jim sent us an invitation along with a brief history of the party:

"The Kidney Party began on the first anniversary as a gathering and party to thank all of the people that were so considerate and helpful during my transplant and recovery. Carole, of German ancestry, was raised in a small German community in Wisconsin and had grown up eating organ meats which she learned to prepare from her mother and grandmother. When we were married she introduced me to beef tongue, beef heart, steak tartar and souse (meat jelly). So naturally, we thought it was appropriate to serve organ meats at that first celebration. We serve steak and kidney pie and beef tongue. And, because the kidney I receive has two ureters, the connection between the kidney and the bladder, we decided to serve split-pea soup. We also served chili with kidney beans, dirty rice and kidney beans, three-bean salad and marinated vegetables with hearts of palm and artichoke hearts. The Kidney Party has become an annual event where we can gather with friends and give thanks for another year of life. "

Friday, December 5, 2008

Notes from The Sisterhood

Events on our Radar
Kitchen Sisters Interviewing & Recording Workshop in San Francisco.
Tuesday, December 16th. Contact us if you'd like to hear about future workshops.

Hidden Kitchens Works in Progress:
  • Inauguration Night potluck meals across the nation.
    Tell us about your's
    Call 202-408-9576.
  • Atomic Wine: Testing the age of wine through nuclear fallout residue.
Radio We’re hearing:
Brian Eno's essay for This I Believe on NPR's Weekend Edition, Sunday, November 23. Recorded by The Kitchen Sisters in Brian Eno’s studio in London. Brian's essay is based on his article, Freestyling.

Books We're reading:

Edges of Bounty by William Emery and Scott Squire.
Edges of Bounty is...a kind of road map. An invitation, a set of possibilities. It beckons. Find a friend, grab your camera and notebook. Hit the road and look for something.
More information available at Heyday Books.

From the Bottom of the Heap by Robert H. King.
We chronicled King's story in our Hidden Kitchens piece, King's Candy. Babylon Falling, an independent bookstore in San Francisco, recently hosted a reading with King. Visit their site to see more. You can order his book published by PM press here. Or visit Babylon Falling.

Websites & Blogs We're Viewing:

Kiss the Paper by Kate & Molly Prentiss

The Girl Project

Music We're Listening to:
Les Amazones De Guinee, an all-police-woman band from the
Republic of Guinea.
Albert Kuvezin & Yat-Kha, the "Tuvan throat-singing punk band"
Cimarrón, a Llanero band from Colombia.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Georgia Gilmore & The Club from Nowhere

Rosa Parks & Martin Luther King

On the evening of December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks, an African American, was arrested for disobeying an Alabama law requiring black passengers to relinquish seats to white passengers when the bus was full. Her arrest sparked a 381-day boycott of the Montgomery bus system and led to a 1956 Supreme Court decision banning segregation on public transportation.

Georgia Gilmore cooking

During the bus boycott that Rosa Parks triggered, a group of Montgomery, Ala., women baked and sold pies, cookies and cakes in beauty salons and on street corners to raise money to buy gas and station wagons to haul people to work The Club from Nowhere, as the group was known, was the brainchild of Georgia Gilmore, a cafeteria worker fired for her organizing efforts.

Georgia is one of the unsung heroes of the civil rights era.
Listen to our Hidden Kitchens radio story from 2005 -
Georgia Gilmore & The Club from Nowhere.
For recipe and photos - visit the
Hidden Kitchens web site. You can find Georgia Gilmore's recipes in our Hidden Kitchens Book.

Read an interview with Georgia from the Washington Film and Video Archive