Matt Cullen – Berks-based drummer and percussionist

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Learn more about what goes into making a studio album in this interview with Berks County-based drummer and percussionist Matt Cullen. We caught up with Matt a few weeks ago at Amoeba Studios, where he was laying down tracks for an upcoming Kris Kehr album.

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Art for Arf’s Sake – Humane Society of Berks County Raises $37,000

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A huge congrats to Humane Society of Berks County and all of those whose participation made it possible to raise $37,000 this for the Society past weekend (read all about it on their website) at their annual Art for Arf’s Sake auction event, held at the GoggleWorks in downtown Reading, PA.

We were there to talk to executive director Karel Minor and development manager Emily Branch, both of whom you’ll see in this clip.

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Teen Challenge – History of the Drug Recovery Program

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In this talk with director Rev. J. Jaime Santiago and intake director Joel Jakubowski, you’ll learn about the background and history of Teen Challenge, a global non-profit drug recovery and prevention organization with local headquarters in Rehrersburg, PA.

In a future segment with Jaime and Joel, you’ll hear about the organization’s recovery philosophy and their plans to relocate part of the operation to Reading, PA.

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Steven White – Berks County Watercolorist – Part 2

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In the second part of our interview with Berks County-based watercolorist Steven White, he talks about the growing culture of artists in the region and how he got into teaching watercolor workshops.

Why watercolor, you ask? “I call it a nervous medium,” he said. “It’s a fast medium, and that’s the way I like to paint. With oil painting, you might have to wait 24-48 hours before you can start again. That would drive me crazy. I like the immediacy of watercolor. It happens very quickly. It’s an addictive medium.”

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Check out the first part of this interview with Steven White and visit his website for more info about watercolor workshops.

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Download Video: Quicktime, Running time: 3:30

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Kevin Murphy – Berks County Community Foundation

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Learn more about the work of Berks County Community Foundation in this segment with president Kevin Murphy. The foundation manages around $42 million in assets and distributes $2.5 in grants annually to community efforts.

“It’s a constant job of going out and understanding what’s working in other communities, not only in the United States but around the world, and what’s not working in those communities, and how we can apply that to the challenges and opportunities that Berks County faces,” he said.

Some of the larger investments are directed towards the future of agriculture in the county and the nurturing of environmentally sustainable industries and practice.

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Doug Long – Greater Berks Food Bank

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Here’s an interview we did with Doug Long of the Greater Berks Food Bank. They’re a central support hub serving more than 227 programs and charities throughout Berks and Schuylkill Counties and the Pottstown area of western Montgomery County by distributing more than 3.5 million pounds (not a typo!) of food annually.

It is incredbily sobering to remember how many people in Berks are living in poverty – around 40,000 – and to think about the sacrifices made by so many volunteers to keep an operation like the food bank up and running.

Please help spread the word about volunteering with the Greater Berks Food Bank. Call 610-926-5802 for more information.

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Bruce Siekmann – Audio Engineer to Local Stars

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We spent a few hours one recent weekend sitting in on some studio sessions at Amoeba Audio in Fleetwood, PA, where owner/engineer Bruce Siekmann works his magic for such famous area acts as Kris Kehr, Maggie Spike, and Jolene.

We came to learn that the passion for recording came from a passion for the music itself. Bruce is an accomplished musician who’s recorded several of his own CDs.

In this video you’ll see on drums Matt Cullen, who was laying down some tracks for an upcoming Kris Kehr CD. We talked to Matt on camera, and you’ll be hearing from him here on Berks.TV very soon….

NOTES and CREDITS: We’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate Peggy and Eric Gernerd, who’ve just launched their new website MaggieSpike.com. It was Peggy and Eric who first turned us on to Bruce’s work, and Peggy has done vocals on some of Bruce’s own tracks. (And by way of shameless promotion, I’ll mention that it was Berks.TV’s parent company Pipe Up! Media who produced their new site.)

Finally, a warm thanks to Kris Kehr and also to Bruce himself, who graciously invited us to sit for an afternoon at Ameoba Audio.

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Gary Emes – NODA Program Coordinator – Reading Hospital

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In this clip, program coordinator Gary Emes talks about No One Dies Alone (NODA), a new program designed to comfort terminally ill patients at Reading Hospital.

You can learn more about volunteer opportunities with this program and others at the hospital by visiting their volunteer page and watching this video with In-service Volunteer Coordinator Sharon Sensenig.

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The Magical Fantastical Flying Show for Kids – Institute of the Arts in Wyomissing

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On a recent weekend, we had a chance to experience The Magical Fantastical Flying Show for Kids, an interactive aerial production at the Institute of the Arts in Wyomissing by Apparatus Collective with Domenick Scudera.

This segment features clips from the show and conversation with Domenick and Apparatus members Janette Fertig and Valentine Aprile, who direct and play Adventure Attendants in the show.

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Download Video: Quicktime, Running time: 2:45

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UPDATE 2/19/2007: Below is a link to the high definition version of this clip.

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Berks JazzFest – Volunteer Opportunities

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Recently we spoke with Mike Zielinski, one of the Berks Jazz Fest publicity directors, about volunteer opportunities connected to the event.

“Our festival would not happen without the wonderful volunteers,” he said.

What are they looking for? Stage managers, hospitality and transportation people, ushers, merchandise sales people, and many more.

To learn more, visit the Berks Jazz Fest website. The Berks Jazz Fest takes place March 16-25.

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Steven White Interview Part 1 in HD

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We’re pleased to continue our series on Berks County, PA artists in high definition video.

Here we bring you the high definition (1280×720) version of the first part of our interview with watercolorist Steven White showing full detail of some of his work.

We posted the 400×225 version of our interview with Steven last week.

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Check out our growing library of high definition of videos from Berks County, PA

Keith Brintzenhoff – Pennsylvania German Music Expert

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At the recent Greater Reading Chamber of Commerce and Industry Winter Picnic, we sat down for a nice chat with Pennsylvania German music expert Keith Brintzenhoff, who performed on stage that night.

In this clip, Keith talks about playing the mountain dulcimer, the mountain banjo, and his personal favorite, the autoharp.

Keith sings, plays, and entertains throughout the area. More info is available at the Toad Creek Ramblers website.

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