Tag Archives: Kaiser Cartel

Celebrating Biodiversity: A Video of AoC’s Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser

From Julie

The generous and talented couple, Wendy and Alan Kaplan, offered their time and talent at our recent event in New York. They mixed and mingled with our guests, grabbed quiet moments for conversation, and covered the evening of talks, art on display, music, and celebration of Planet Earth’s glorious biodiversity. Philip Hanes came to our rescue and put the clips together. Thank you very much Wendy, Alan, and Philip!

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 Scenes from Art of Conservation’s Exhibition & Fundraiser at Pratt Institute Manhattan. 22 November 2013

Thank You Friends! What Would We Do Without You? NYC Part 2

Here is another batch of photos – courtesy of Jason Rearick and Marcus Alexander of Epoch Times – from our special evening with friends at AoC’s Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in Manhattan.

Thank you again to our sponsors, volunteers, board members, musicians, Pratt faculty, friends and family. A special thanks for new funding offered by the Norman and Bettina Roberts Foundation.

Dave & Lucy at Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013Dave and Lucy.

Keynote by Lucy at Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013A slide from Dr. Lucy Spelman’s excellent keynote. She asks, “How can we help people feel closer to wild animals the way they feel about their pets?”

Jolie at Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013I am so happy to see and talk with my longtime childhood friend Jolie!

Missing CHT at Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013Andrew and Allison take time out to reflect on the Conservation Heritage – Turambe team in Rwanda and how much we all miss them.

Julie, Jocelyn, Cheryl. Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013I am here with ceramics artist Jocelyn and our fabulous hostess Cheryl.

Tracy & Crystal Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013Honorary Board Member Tracy Levine and an extraordinary volunteer, Crystal, share a moment in front of photography on display.

Dalton at Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in NYC November 2013Another extraordinary volunteer DALTON!

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in New York City November 2013Allison with artist Rodrigo Valles.

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in New York City November 2013Daniel, Scarlett, and Dawn are kind supporters of AoC.

Thanks again everyone for a successful event.

Thank You Friends! What Would We Do Without You? NYC Part 1

Thank you for making our Exhibition & Fundraiser at Pratt Institute Manhattan a very special event.

Sponsors, volunteers, board members, musicians, Pratt faculty, friends and family generated the most positive energy for a common goal to make Earth a more healthy place for all.

Please enjoy the photos below courtesy of Jason Rearick and Marcus Alexander of Epoch Times. Click here for more coverage of the evening at Epoch Times. I wish I had had my camera too but it was so nice to have time with guests. Dr. Lucy Spelman’s keynote was well received with everyone commenting afterward that the one-health concept becomes clearer and clearer all the time and the need for a multidisciplinary approach to conservation is essential. More photos are surfacing, but for now here you go. Be sure not to miss our famous photographer Andrew Walmsley dressed up in his magnificent kilt straight off the plane from Scotland! Thank you again and again from the Art of Conservation team.

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013Allison with Philip Choi and Joseph Canciglia of the Norman and Bettina Roberts Foundation.

Jackie & Julia at AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013Jacky and Julia help with auction items and merchandise.

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013A roomful of wonderful friends.

Andrew, Julie, Allison, Cheryl. AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013Andrew, Julie, Allison, and Cheryl. Allison and Cheryl did a fabulous job putting together the event!

Musicians Courtney and Benjamin at AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013Courtney and Benjamin of Kaiser Kartel play a sampling of music written for AoC.

Musician Rubin Kodheli at AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013At the close of the evening we listened to beautiful cello music composed and played by Rubin Kodheli.

Lori Howe at AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser, NYC 2013Board member Lori Howe viewing and purchasing photos on display.

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in New York City November 2013Allison with Daniel Azarian and Wendy Kaplan.

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in New York City November 2013Exciting auction items!

AoC's Pratt Exhibition & Fundraiser in New York City November 2013Paintings and gift bags!

A successful evening thanks to all.

AoC’s World Premier Short Film at New York Wildlife Conservation Film Festival

From Julie

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Art of Conservation’s Allison Hanes and Cheryl Stockton helped present our World Premier Short Film at New York Wildlife Conservation Film Festival in October. This film was made to share with the public the successful work AoC has been carrying out in Rwanda for over seven years, as well as highlight our present expansion with new initiatives in Guyana, Panama, and other locations this year.

New York Wildlife Conservation Film Festival October 2013

Thank you New York Wildlife Conservation Film Festival for putting together talented compassionate individuals and groups doing amazing conservation work. It helps keep the spark alive being surrounded by the energy of such wonderful people doing such important work.

AoC’s Exhibition & Fundraiser is quickly approaching. Click here and get your tickets today!

For more information and ways to get involved with AoC please email [email protected]

November in NYC! Save the Date!

From Julie Ghrist

Hi Friends & Generous Supportors,
AoC is having an exhibition and fundraiser in New York City on Friday, 22 November 2013. Art of Conservation Board Member Cheryl Stockton has worked at Pratt Institute for many years and has secured a fantastic site at Pratt’s Manhattan CCPS Gallery. Please come by if you are in the city! Allison, Cheryl, Lucy Spelman, Andrew Walmsley and I will be there with board members, volunteers, photographers, musicians and incredibly special friends and colleagues. Details will follow as we get closer to the time, but feel free to contact us anytime at [email protected] Thank you, Julie

AoC Exhibition & Fundraiser New York November 2013

Singing for Gorillas – 2013 Children’s Performance Preparations at Art of Conservation

From Julie Ghrist

Art of Conservation is preparing for our 2013 children’s performances with music written and recorded by musicians Kaiser Cartel. Please watch our video below, thanks!

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Preparations for 2013 children’s performances at Art of Conservation

Africa Weeks for the Animals, Day 3: Heroes of the Forest

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2012 AoC students practice and perform Heroes of the Forest.

Art of Conservation joins Animal World USA-International in its 3rd Africa Weeks for the Animals. Throughout this celebration, we will be featuring an inside look at our conservation and health lessons taught in Rwanda by the AoC team focusing on the protection of the critically endangered mountain gorilla. Mountain gorilla habitat consists of two small areas in Africa- The Virunga Massif and Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. With only approximately 786 mountain gorillas left in the world, I hope you will agree that intense effort must continue to be made for this species survival. AoC’s role in gorilla protection involves working with rural communities which surround gorilla habitat. Please click here for more on AWUSA-International Africa Weeks.

Please consider supporting Art of Conservation today by clicking here. Thank you very much!

Children Sing For Gorillas

On a recent Friday afternoon, 200 children gathered at school and waited with anticipation for a chartered bus to arrive. Their destination… Kinigi Town. More specifically, they were headed to perform at the 2011 pre-Kwita Izina ceremony known in Kinyarwanda as Igitaramo. Annually, the day before the baby gorilla naming ceremony, a community party takes place in which local people perform for their neighbors, colleagues, tourists, and government officials.

The AoC team and wonderful volunteers met the children as they came off the bus. Janvier, RDB’s Community Conservation Warden, accommodated the kids so graciously by having chairs arranged near the stage. After a few songs from local Intore groups, Janvier told us to prepare the first group of children to go on stage. Our students from Rushubi School put on their African fabric vests (although some were a bit long and seemed more like dresses) while many held papier mache gorilla masks.

Please click here to enjoy a short video of the children performing Kaiser Cartel’s In Virunga / Mu Birunga – a song and dance about mountain gorillas and their habitat.

Heroes of the Forest with Simpson College Volunteers

Another school – another song full of conservation messages. Heroes of the Forest is composed and recorded by Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel for AoC and we have Simpson College volunteers helping us again in the classroom. The children will sing and perform to the song in the upcoming Igitaramo party – part of Kwita Izina – Rwanda’s Annual Gorilla Naming ceremony.

Students working on pronunciation. AoC 2011Children experiment with their voices while learning the lyrics, both in English and Kinyarwanda.

Simpson College volunteers with AoC. 2011.Virginia helps children at Nyange School.

Virginia Croskery, a professor of world music, led this group of 10 Simpson College students from Iowa to Rwanda for a week of work with AoC.

“Gorillas live up by the volcanoes, hey come round. Monkeys in the fields steal potatoes, hey come round.” These are a few of the lines in Heroes of the Forest. Virginia encourages them to really open their mouths and exaggerate pronunciation.

Simpson College volunteer Greg with students at Nyange.  AoC 2011.Jeff helps the children with pronunciation.

AoC teachers-in-training Jean Bosco and Providence.  AoC 2011.Teachers-in-training, Jean Bosco and Providence, watch and listen.

You can’t see here, but when the school whistle blows signaling Nyange’s other students are free, they congregate outside our room and join in with learning Heroes of the Forest. It will be amazing when the entire Northern Province is singing this song which expresses the sentiment of people and animals living together… side by side…. always and forever…. with respect.

Learning In Virunga.  AoC at Nyange Primary School, Rwanda. 2011.In the Nyange classroom.

Rushubi Kids Receive Help From Simpson Volunteers

Virginia Croskery, a professor of music at Simpson College in Iowa, began planning a service learning trip to Rwanda last year. After 10 interested students signed up, Virginia encouraged them to reach out to their community to raise money and gather donated supplies. The group of participants fulfilled Virginia’s request by receiving a check for $1500 plus transporting bags full of supplies to AoC Office in Musanze Town, Rwanda. Truly, I can hardly express how happy my team and I are by their efforts.

I was told the volunteers would not hesitate to get busy where ever they were needed, so our first day was to our regularly scheduled class at Rushubi School. We are quickly approaching Rwanda’s Annual Gorilla Naming ceremony, Kwita Izina, in which our students will perform in the community party called Igitaramo. Well, we haven’t really started to prepare for this important event and capitalizing on Virginia’s expertise in world music and diction, our focus nows turns toward the songs that they will sing and perform and which are full of conservation messages.

Practicing In Virunga with Virginia. AoC 2011.Virginia with Rushubi students.

Our 100 Rushubi students will perform In Virunga / My Birunga – a song composed and recorded by AoC friends Courtney Kaiser and Benjamin Cartel. (Click here for more Kaiser Cartel.) This song has two versions, one in English and one in Kinyarwanda.

Practicing In Virunga.  Rushubi Primary School. AoC 2011.Simpson College volunteers, Arron and Anna, help children discover their voices and encourage them to make new sounds.

For many years now, AoC students have been learning Courtney and Benjamin’s songs and as a result have been teaching them to their brothers and sisters, as well. With this 2011 group of kids, they definitely have the Kinyarwanda version down fine…. it’s the English version we are working on today.

Pronunciation lessons. AoC 2011.Children feel the air after Virginia asks them to strongly accentuate and exaggerate their t’s and b’s and p’s and so on.

In spoken Rwandan language, Kinyarwanda, the l’s and r’s are often difficult to transfer to English speaking. We practice a lot on pronouncing words like we’re.

Practicing In Virunga by Kaiser Cartel.  AoC 2011.With In Virunga / Mu Birunga lyrics in their notebooks and lots of encouragement to open their mouths wide, kids are open to experimentation.

We all admitted to feeling wiped out and nearly unable to speak after 3 hours of singing.

Practicing In Virunga.  Valerie and Emily at Rushubi Primary School. AoC 2011.Valerie with Simpson volunteers Emily and Angela at Rushubi Primary School.

I hope you can see that we had a dynamic class and again, thank you very much to Virginia and her amazing group of volunteers. More about their contributions to AoC coming up!