Media Arts Program

Friday, November 17, 2000


Presented at:

LIVING WITH PRIDE: Ruth Ellis AT 10 (Yvonne Welbon, 1999, USA, 60 min, video)

The first time Yvonne Welbon set eyes on her, Ruth Ellis was tearing up a dance floor. "There was this woman dancing, and I was trying to figure out how old she was," Welbon recalls. "And it turned out I never got a chance to ask her that night because she never stopped dancing."
That was in 1997 at the National Women’s Music Festival in Indiana. The next day Welbon, already an accomplished filmmaker at the age of 34, learned that Ellis was 97. She knew she wanted to tell this extraordinary woman’s story. Three years and 50 hours of footage later, Welbon completed this award-winning documentary.
The film is not only the tale of one ordinary woman’s extraordinary life but also the story of an entire century of change. "What I realized, listening to her tell the stories, is that we were witnessing American history through Ruth Ellis’s eyes." Living With Pride: Ruth Ellis @ 100 has taken Ellis’s life story to film festivals around the world and was selected for the Whitney Museum of American Art’s prestigious 2000 Biennial in New York.

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November, 2000. - 2000