Up next in travelogue series: 'My Private Italy'

DOWNEY -- Filmmaker Steve McCurdy will return to the Downey Theatre this Sunday to present his newest cultural documentary, 'My Private Italy."The film begins at 2:30 p.m. and is the eighth of the 2008-09 Armchair Adventure Travelogue Series. "My Private Italy" is a personal journey through the sights and sounds, people and places, and magic of the everyday experiences in mostly northern Italy. McCurdy meets a mask maker in Venice, attends a wedding in Livorno, stays in the mountain top town of St. Luce, participates in the festival of San Cataldo, travels to a ghost town Compania, and meets dozens of people along the way. His journey takes him to Venice, Bassano del Grappa, Varese, Livorno, St. Luce, the Cinque Terre, Florence, Supino, Buccino, Vecchio Romagnano al Monte and Rome. McCurdy's adventures are interspersed with old 8mm home movies from the 1950's and 60's that take the audience back to a bygone Italy. The film's message of cultural preservation, along with the charm and "enchantment of everyday experiences," challenges viewers to enjoy Italy without trying to change it too much and, at the same time, to preserve and enjoy their own cultural heritage. This is a collection of images that need to be shown, voices that need to be heard, and stories that need to be shared before they're lost or forgotten or before no one cares anymore," McCurdy writes. "Captured on film is my adventure. This is my private Italy." McCurdy began his film and video production career in 1988 after graduating with a B.A. in broadcast communications. His emphasis was in Educational and Corporate Media Design which led to employment as a scriptwriter. Two years later, he went to work for WordPerfect Corporation, where he was the senior producer and associate manager of the Corporate Video and Film Department. In 1994, McCurdy left to pursue freelance work and started his own company, Creative Light Productions. Since then, he has directed and filmed in more than 20 countries on five continents, and has worked on hundreds of projects as a producer, director, writer and editor. He has produced films for major companies including Novell, Hewlett-Packard and Compaq. McCurdy began a transition into documentary and travel film in 2001. He was last featured in Downey three years ago when he presented the travelogue film, "Postcards from Italy." The Armchair Adventure Travelogue Series features full-color, feature-length travelogues with live, in-person narration by the travel adventure producer. Films are shown Sundays at 2:30 p.m. in the Downey Theatre. Tickets will be available beginning Sunday at 1:30 p.m. at the theater box office. Regular admission tickets are $7, and $6 for seniors and students (cash or check only). For more information, call the box office at (562) 861-8211. The box office is open Monday through Friday between noon and 4 p.m. ********** Published: March 13, 2009 - Volume 7 - Issue 47