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WXXI-TV

Wednesday, September 8 at 8 p.m. Benches on Parade

(Rochester, NY) WXXI captures the spirit of Rochester’s most recent community arts project in Benches on Parade, premiering Wednesday, September 8 at 8 p.m. on WXXI-TV (DT21.1/cable 1011 and 11). Shot in high definition over the last six months, WXXI’s newest production showcases all 119 benches that were transformed into the beautiful works of art that have adorned the streets and parks of Rochester.

Narrated by AM 1370 local Morning Edition host Alex Crichton, Benches on Parade offers a glimpse into the creation of these public works of art, talks with the project creators, bench sponsors, and beneficiaries, and shares the community’s reaction to the benches.

Chris Pallace, Kevin Serwacki, Mitch Messina, Pat Rechlin and Colleen L'Hommedieu are just a few of the artists that give a glimpse into their process that has brought these unassuming canvases of fiberglass to life. The film also follows international artist Philip Burke, from start to finish, in his creation of the Chuck Mangione bench. Burke is best known for his whimsical caricatures in Rolling Stone Magazine.

Dixon Schwabl's Howie Jacobson and Lauren Dixon, the project producers, explain how the project came to fruition, while Nazareth College President Daan Braveman shares what being a beneficiary of the project means to his university. Viewers will also hear from bench sponsors on why they support the project.

During the premiere of Benches on Parade viewers will have the opportunity to obtain a DVD copy of the broadcast and receive the Benches on Parade commemorative book and a miniature collectible replica of one of the benches. Project producers Jacobson and Dixon will also be in studio that evening to unveil a new bench, and talk about the auctioning of the benches, which will be held on September 24th.

Designed to showcase the talents of Rochester’s rich arts community, instill civic pride, and support local non-profit organizations, the Benches on Parade Community Arts Project launched in August 2009 when project presenter Nazareth College and project producer Dixon Schwabl unveiled the white benches to a group of artists. Over the winter these artists worked diligently to transform their benches into creative masterpieces, which have since been seen throughout the Rochester community.

To learn more about the film, and the arts community project, visit WXXI.org/benches.

Pictured: Artists Chris Pallace and Kevin Serwacki working on the Kodak benches

Credit: WXXI

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WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.