The Homeless Chorus Speaks

SUSAN POLIS SCHUTZ, DIRECTOR and PRODUCER    -    BRET GRANATO A.C.E, SUPERVISING EDITOR    -    ANNUKKAH LILJA, EDITOR


 
"Her film is a lesson in empathy, demonstrating how ground-shifting the simple act of listening can be."

     --Los Angeles Times
 
"..an uplifting film"

     --The Village Voice
 
""..a poignant, eye-opening documentary by critically acclaimed documentarian, Susan Polis Schutz. It provides a heart-wrenching glimpse into the tragic homeless emergency in America..""

     --Juli Schafer, Television Academy (emmys.com)
 
"The Homeless Chorus Speaks is a compelling documentary that creatively depicts a critical and timely social issue: people living without support and shelter. Using a unique community choir (Voices of Our City Choir,) as a vehicle to tell the stories of people suffering with homelessness, the film -- like all of Susan Polis Schutz’s documentaries -- effectively puts a human face on a crucial problem and makes it strikingly clear just how easily someone can end up living on the streets. "

     --Lauren Mills, Senior Manager, American Public Television

SYNOPSIS

The Homeless Chorus Speaks Homeless people are like you and me. Life is tough on the streets, but hope has come in the form of a homeless chorus.

In Susan Polis Schutz’s interviews with fourteen homeless members of Voices of Our City Choir, they tell their stories; from women who have been abused and used, to those battling addiction, to people who just can't afford housing, to people who need medical care. They talk about their backgrounds, why they are homeless, the inhumanity of homelessness, their hopes and dreams, and what each think the solutions to the homeless problem might be.

While singing inspirational songs such as "Over the Rainbow," their voices soar, and the harsh realities of the street evaporate if only for an hour. Together, in their shared voices, they find joy and family. And from their " comes the power to change lives. Released 2018 (57 minutes).


CREDITS and ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
Directed and Produced by Susan Polis Schutz
Bret Granato A.C.E, supervising editor
Annukkah Lilja, editor
Consultant Stephen Schutz
Immeasurable thanks to Steph Johnson
Director of Photography Steven Skinner
 
Interviewees
Antonio, Chile, Brian, Brook, Chiara, Diane, Janet, Jean, John, Judah, Mark K, Mark S, Nina, Richard, Steph, Teela
 
Musicians
Leah Bowden - Drums
Nina Leilani Deering – Keys/Choir Director
Rob Thorsen - Bass
Steph Johnson - Guitar/Voice
 
Additional Videos and Photos
Video and Photos courtesy of
 Homelessness News San Diego
 thanks to Michael McConnell
Additional Video Courtesy of KPBS
Additional Video Courtesy of Andi Last Productions
Aerial footage used under license from Shutterstock.com
 
Editorial Consultants
Marlon Reis, Myrna Estes, Jared Polis, Jordanna Polis Schutz, Jorian Polis Schutz
 
Camera
Aron Brown, Matt Geraci, Eboni Harvey, Darren Kawasaki, David Kushner, Steve Raines, Roel Robles
 
Sound
Nicholas Bozzio – Mixer
Glenn Kram – Audio
Paul Mendez – Audio
Matt A. Schoenfeld - Sound Re-Recording Mixer
 
Other
Colorist: Rick Gougler
Music Clearance: Evan M. Greenspan, Inc.
Additional Photo: Chris Stone
 
Music
AMAZING GRACE, Lyrics: John Newton, Additional Lyrics: Nina Deering, Music: New Britain (traditional)
 
BLUES IN MY SHOES, Written by Chile Groove  

LEAN ON ME, Written by Bill Withers, Published by Songs of Universal, Inc. on behalf of Interior Music Corp  

LOVE RESCUE ME, Writers: Bono, Adam Clayton, Bob Dylan, The Edge, Larry Mullen, Jr., Published by Universal-Polygram Int. Publ., Inc. on behalf of Universal Music Publ. Int. B.V. and Special Rider Music
 
MAYBE, Written by Steph Johnson
 
NO LOVE DYING, Written by Gregory Parker, Published by Universal Music Inc. on behalf of Golden Slipper Publishing
 
ONCE IN A LIFETIME, Written by Mark A. Kaleimamahu
 
OVER THE RAINBOW, Written by Harold Arlen and E. Yip Harburg Published by EMI Feist Catalog, Inc.
 
SHOWER THE PEOPLE, Written by James Vernon Taylor Published by Country Road Music, Inc.
 
WE ARE FAMILY, Written by Bernard Edwards and Nile Rodgers Published by Sony/ATV Songs LLC on behalf of Tommy Jymi Music Inc., and Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. on behalf of Bernard's Other Music
 
WHAT'S GOING ON, Written by Alfred Cleveland, Marvin P. Gaye and Renaldo Benson, Published by Jobete Music Co., Inc. and Stone Agate Music
 
Music Courtesy of APM Music:
THE LUMINARY, THE JOURNEY, WHILE OTHERS SLEEP, I SEE THE LIGHT, BLOSSOM STORM, ENCHANTMENT, CLIMBING THE WALL, THE THAW, PURE TRANQUILITY, SUNRISE, TRAPPED SOUL, THE JOURNEY, SPRINGTIME SERENADE, I SEE THE LIGHT, FORGOTTEN MEMORIES

 
 
Recommended organizations for information:
 
Website for Voices of Our City Choir
 
Homelessness News San Diego
or more frequent updates, follow:
Michael McCOnnell on twitter
 
Advocacy Group:
Think Dignity - activism with the homeless

 
Thanks
John Decker
Nina Leilani Deering
Michael McConnell
Steve Skinner
 
Appreciation
APT
Birch Aquarium
Karen Bidgood
Chris Carlyle
Beth Chee
Jillian Frost
Charlie Goldberg
Jay Grodin
Jay Hall
Tom Karlo
KPBS
Paul Knutson
Taylor Guitars
Jill Linder
Living Water Church of the Nazarene
Harry Melkonian
Lauren Mills
Chris Nafis
San Diego Central Library
Brandy Shimabukuro
Nimmi Singh
Martha Sullivan
Nancy Trent
Voices of Our City Choir
Pam Wadler
Deering Banjo Company
 
Others
Abigail Eastman
Brian Burton
Chelsea Allen
Corina Borevitz
Curtis Rome
Dante Williams
Debra Najera
Diane Ratigan
Duterval Leocadie
Eric Arundel
Erica Freeman
Erika Medina
James Freeman
Jessica Tenerelli
Jolene Shumilak
Jorge Gimeno
Joseph Ciavarella
Joshua Mack
Keely Kiczenski
Keith Anderson
Lori Wilson
Lorna De La Cruz
Maureen Dinsmore
Meshell Zwicker
Nikki Scheidt
Richard McNamee
Robert Taylor
Rosy Vasquez
Stephen Durham
Steve Cisneros
Wendy Christopher
Yuko Yamada Pruitt
Thank you to KPBS, whose TV news story about the Voices of Our City Choir, inspired me to make this documentary.
 
Additional Editors
Joaquin Perez
Bob Shroder
 
Production Assistants
Chris Brennan
Jeff Cubbison
Margo Skinner
 
Assistant Editor
Sandra Stakic
 
 
 
 

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