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"Andy Warhol's FactoryPeople"

Three hour series includes excerpts from over fifty hours of original interviews, hundreds of never before seen photos, exotic film clips, and a lot of very cool stuff . . . all backed by a mind-blowing original soundtrack.


Jack Dowd's 27

Jack Dowd is an amazing American artist who has recently completed a series of portraits of music personalities who share the ironic  distinction of having died at the tender young age of 27. Most recently, this being the fate of Grammy winner, Amy Winehouse. To celebrate the work, Dowd recently exhibited the portraits as a collection at the Marie Selby Gallery in Sarasota, Florida. As part of the exhibition, Dowd and his band did a musical evening of songs and rememberings related to his personal feelings about twelve of the personalities he painted. I happened to be in town for the evening and took along my trusty Samsung NV7 and managed to film a couple of their songs related to Al Wilson of Canned Heat, Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and Kurt Cobain. After I looked at the footage, I thought it would be interesting to create a kind of a "sketch" as to how elements for a finished documentary on the subject could go together. Thanks for the invite Jack, and best wishes for continued success with the exhibition.


Jazz Juvenocracy

Jazz Juvenocracy...A Feature Documentary  in Development

"As long as there are 10-year-olds starting their own bands and communities to support them, jazz is here to stay."  -Bit Risner,  Co-Founder  Jazz Juvenocracy

2006...Alex (Sax), Rodney (Drums), and Bit (Trumpet) play their first gig in front of Whole Foods, Sarasota, Florida.

Jazz Juvenocracy, started by Alex Hernandez, Rodney Rocques, and Bit Risner , when she was 10 years old, has in the last six years evolved into a group of Sarasota-area high school jazz musicians who are making an international name for themselves.  It’s not just their impressive talent and accomplishment so early in life that makes them the coolest of kids, but how they push boundaries, and eagerly defy expectations, tackling what might seem out of their league, even at the risk of falling short.

2013 Jazz Juvenocracy. Bit, now 16, is the only original Juvie remaining with the group.

The current group includes Bit Risner, Trumpet and Vocals; Ronan Cowan, Drums/Percussion; Mario Santana, Violin/Sax; Thomas Shepard, Tenor Sax; Mackenzie Gray, Guitar; Lamont Kaiser, Bass; and Aaron Lehrian, Piano/Keyboards.

Bit Risner, has ventured into vocals the past couple of years, and according to Carrie Seidman , the Sarasota Herald Tribune  music and performance critic, “She tends to bridle when people praise her singing more than her playing, but I give kudos to both. Her skill, range and emotion in a largely solo rendition of "Angel Eyes” was electric, as she coaxed her horn from growling lows to piercing highs.

On tour, doing the European Jazz Festival circuit....

Other comments from Seidman covering the “Juvies” talent and style include, “Mario Santana set a blistering pace on violin in "Lime House Blues" and showed facility on the clarinet in "West End Blues." Lamont Kaiser was a steady, soulful presence on bass and Ronan Cowan on drums switched easily from the percussive punctuations of "I've Got Rhythm" to the erratic pacing of Dave Brubeck's "Blue Rondo a la Turk," in an arrangement by guitarist Mackenzie Gray, a infallible contributor throughout.  As for pianist Aaron Lehrian, is there anything this kid can't play? While he was clearly more comfortable with ballads ("My Foolish Heart") than ragtime (Scott Joplin's "Maple Leaf Rag"), he's clearly a beautiful blend of a classical pianist's perfectionism and a jazz musician's innovation.”

Vienne Jazz Festival, July 3, 2013

Over the six-year history of Jazz Juvenocracy, the band lost one or two players each year, some to college, some to geography,  a few that just weren’t a good fit. Only Mario Santana, who joined the band in 2012, and Bit Risner, an original founder, have been along for the entire ride. This year, five out of the seven current members are leaving, placing the future of the “Juvies” as they are called in jeopardy. 

The "Juvies" played their last stateside gig together June 28th, 2013 in Sarasota. This demo-shot video featurees their entire rendition of "Caravan".

With one last European jazz tour swing about to be completed, (link to tour dates) including an invitation to play at the prestigious North Sea Festival in Rotterdam, only time will tell. It’s probably up to Bit, now a junior in high school, and looking forward to entry into New York’s Julliard School of Music, to decide what the future holds for the Juvenocracy.

That’s the story for this feature documentary, now in development.



Surf Challenge: The Killer Waves of the Nazare Canyon

Nazare, Portugal...home of the world's biggest, most dangerous waves.

This is a new project currently in pre-production and slated for Spring 2013 release in association with extreme surfing professional Garrett McNamara, and Ronan Nagle, co-executive producer of Discovery Channel's 'StormChasers'.


Surf Challenge: The Killer Waves of the Nazare Canyon (DemoClipBigWaveTeams) from sarasotafringefilms on Vimeo.


Just off the coast of Portugal, stretching 250 miles west into the Atlantic Ocean, there is a deep undersea trough that’s deeper, longer, and wider than America’s Grand Canyon.  At one end, far out to sea, the mouth of the canyon is wide. At the other end near to the coast, the canyon is narrow just near the seaside Portuguese village of Nazare. Waters passing through this natural funnel, are amplified and pressurized, creating waves of skyscraper proportions. This eons-old, natural phenomenon was recently discovered by American wave hunter, Garrett McNamara, one of the world’s top professional tow-in big wave surfers.

Waves are forced in by a deep-water canyon...passing through a funnel.

Tow-In surfer Garrett McNamara riding a 90-footer through the Nazare.

Garrett makes the Guinness Book of World Records

Last year, Garrett rode a monster (perhaps the tallest wave ever ridden) out of the Nazare. This October, 2012, he’s back for MORE with his tow-in team and teams from around the world to compete in the ‘North Canyon Challenge’, perhaps the world’s most dangerous extreme surfing event. Teams from France, Spain, England, Ireland, Asia and South America will be along for the ‘ride’, in an attempt successfully challenge the Killer Waves of the Nazare Canyon.

Garrett McNamara

The Producers are preparing to create a six-episode series based on the Nazare. The Series will follow McNamara, the big wave teams, their training, and life experiences as they descend on Nazare for the month long exercise. The fishing village of Nazare is the background. Picturesque and quaint, the natives don’t exactly know what to make of these adventurers, but they extend warm welcomes and share their age old tales and stories of the big wave.

Big Wave riding is a way of life.

Through the course of the series we’ll learn about the life of a big wave rider. There are times when the swells don’t fulfill their promise, and times when surfers make the wrong decisions and question their partners.  And there are moments when the true passion, the true drive that separates these guys from the rest becomes clear—when we see a lone rider feel at home mocking down the slope of a hundred foot wall of water.

Senic Nazare, Portugal...old traditions mix with the new.

Hours of exquisite HD footage have been shot over the past two years covering activities on the Canyon and add color for the new material to be shot taking advantage of the latest innovation in cinema coverage to make the show a breathtaking experience to watch. We’ll see the latest in wave prediction technology and the intricate web of communication and intelligence that surfers rely on to make critical decisions on where to go and when. We’ll test how each surfer physically reacts to varying situations whether it be paddle surfing big waves, training underwater, or practicing yoga, and compare these experiences to what happens when a wipeout occurs, or an epic wave is ridden.


McNamara and the Teams are seasoned professionals, some mature, some ‘rough riders out for a thrill’. With engaging personalities and joke-a-minute attitudes, these pros know how to have fun, and how to meet a major challenge. Fear of the wave is evident, but fear can be just part of the experience. These guys really know how to share feelings, chip at each other and get through the Canyon in one piece.

The Series is a backstage pass granting access into the lives of amazing individuals: their hobbies, their passions, and their daily regimens


‘Surf Challenge: The Killer Waves of the Nazare Canyon’ is not your run-of-the-mill, one-shot, surfing spectacular, but a true extreme reality series that covers all the bases, and yes, that means there will be the unexpected. The cameras will be looking out for that.

The Big Wave Teams include 7 elite surfers pairing up into four teams:

Garrett McNamara & Keali’i Mamala, Hawaiians

Greg Long & Grant “Twiggy” Baker, Californian and South African

Carlos Burle & Maya Gabiera, Brazilians

Jamie Sterling, Hawaiian and a local surfer

Nagle, 'Chasing A Different Kind of Storm"....

Stormchaser Ronan Nagle and the TIV from sarasotafringefilms on Vimeo.

The Producing Team for the Series is led by Ronan P. Nagle, Executive Producer of Discovery Channel’s hit series: ‘Storm Chasers’. This seasoned extreme-series producer has spent the past decade chasing, riding out, documenting, and sharing his teams’ killer tornado experiences. The camera people are all experienced extreme-sports documentarians…engaged, passionate, and dedicated to provide exciting coverage. Sophisticated in-the-water filming and recording techniques will be utilized to offer the viewer an amazing experience. Production plans call for an October-November shoot in Nazare.


For more information please contact:



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