Sun Feb 26, 2023 – 5:00 pm | Beloit College Powerhouse
Sat Mar 4, 2023 – 5:00 pm | Downtown Beloit Association

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Leaders of Madison’s Black Renaissance

Written and Produced by Charles Taylor
Documentary Feature
United States | 105 min | 2022

There is something extraordinary happening in Madison, Wisconsin. Despite Blacks making up only 7% of Madison’s population, there are more Black elected officials on the city council and school board than ever in the city’s history. Two Blacks from Madison were elected to the WI state legislature in the last election. Madison’s school superintendent is Black, as is its Police Chief, District attorney and County Sheriff. Blacks are leading multiple large non-profit agencies and spearheading multi-million dollar building projects all over the city. Blacks are leading in so many important areas and are launching so many key initiatives that many people are calling this period in Madison’s history a “Black renaissance.”

This film introduces viewers to nearly 40 of Madison’s most prolific leaders in ten different genres as they define what is happening in Madison and what it means to the city’s future.

AWARDS

Winner of the People’s Choice Award
Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM), 2021

The Best Feature Documentary Award
Indy Film Fest, 2022

The Cercle d’or for Best Feature Documentary Award
Sherbrooke World Film Festival, 2022

The Grand Prix Documentary Award
Rising Sun International Film Festival, 2022

The Silver Award for Best Feature Documentary
Tokyo Film Awards, 2022

The Dr. Sydney K. Shapiro Humanitarian Award
Phoenix Film Festival, 2022

The Best Editing of a Documentary Award
Madrid International Film Festival, 2022

The Excellence in Editing Award
Docs Without Borders Film Festival, 2022

The Best Editing Award
Brussels World Film Festival, 2022

REVIEWS

“Truly a rare moment in Cinema… This film is a marvel”
Mélikah Abdelmoumen & Marc Béland, CBC Radio Canada

“An Exquisite Gem. Tenderness, wonder, & dignity…
a beautiful film about beautiful people”
Richard Propes, The Independent Critic

“Anyone who watches Dear Audrey will undoubtedly conclude
that Hayes is a masterful filmmaker”
Charlie Smith, The Georgia Straight

“Touching… luminous… truly magnificent”
Caroline Levesque, CBC Radio Canada

“Dear Audrey, a riveting documentary…
that stands as a powerful paean to passion and perseverance”
Evelyn C White, The Halifax Examiner

“…so many amazing lessons, stories, emotions with pain
and celebration intertwined”
Darren Wiesner, Hollywood North Magazine

“It’s impossible to watch this documentary, (a People’s Choice Award winner), without being overwhelmed by its sweetness and generosity”
Silvia Galipeau, La Press

“…an at once ethereal reflection on the enduring power of love,
and unblinking revelation of life’s steel-cold realities”
Chris Cook, Gorilla Radio

“The central force of Dear Audrey is the eternal, almost implacable force of love that binds people together through the most difficult times”
Dorothy Woodend, The Tyee

“Dear Audrey celebrates the very best the human heart has to offer, with such compassion, artistry and grace”
Terre Nash, Oscar-winning director

“A Stunning Love Story You Won’t Soon Forget!”
Indy Film Fest

“This love story will bring you joy, hope, tears and humility…”
Dr. Jen Hammersmark, Mind Your Madness

“…a beautiful homage to Audrey, to the couple’s
love and their family”
Nantali Indongo, CBC Radio

“Beautiful, touching … ‘Dear Audrey’ is a testament to
what Audrey was and what she remains forever”
Rob Wilson, The Bobr Times

“Poignant and could not be more authentic”
Amandine de Chanteloup, Le Collectif

This film is important given the status of race relations in this country. Madison, WI is modeling what happens when a city makes use of all of its talent. The progress that Blacks are making in Madison offers a lesson to other cities around the country or anyone with an open mind and willingness to imagine what our country could become if Blacks were fully integrated into the economic and political mainstream in all of our cities. There are still real challenges in Madison, just like in other cities-perhaps the difference is that Blacks for now, are at the table.

Leaders of Madison's Black Renaissance POSTER

Leaders of Madison's Black RenaissanceCharles Andrew Taylor
Writer & Producer

Dr. Taylor is a retired professor and author of six non-fiction books, two WI biographies, a novel, a Children’s musical play and writer/producer of the award-winning documentary: DECADE OF DISCONTENT. Charles also produced the Journey of Hope Film series on Rev Carmen Porco’s housing ministry in WI that lifted people out of poverty.

Leaders of Madison's Black RenaissanceJeremy Nichols
Photographer & Editor

Jeremy is a four-time Emmy Award-winning photographer who has worked at major news stations in Madison, WI, and owns Poppyseed Video Productions.

Film Information

Country: United States
Year: 2022
Language: English
Runtime: 105 min
Rated:  G

Credits

Writer: Charles A. Taylor
Executive Producer: Charles A. Taylor
Photographer: Jeremy Nichols
Editor: Jeremy Nichols

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BIFF | Beloit International Film Festival