Before the Film Show - to be read by the mc
The Writer and Director of the film, Mr. Paul Kalinian, who is here with us tonight, was born in Beirut, Lebanon, on February 14, 1932. Kalinian’s family moved to Damascus, Syria, where he received his primary education. At the age of 14, Kalinian began learning photography at the Photo Gulbenk studio workshop in Damascus. At the age of 18, he returned to Beirut and continued his photography career and secondary education. In 1961, Kalinian opened his first photography studio, Photo Paul, in Beirut. Three years later, on July 29, 1964, he moved to Montreal, Canada, then to the United States to pursue a more promising future.
In 1967, Kalinian completed his education and received his degree in Professional Photography and Motion Picture Production from the New York Institute of Photography. In the same year, Kalinian returned to Beirut to marry his longtime sweetheart Araxie Deuvletian. They made their permanent home in Fresno, California, where they were blessed with twins—a son, Harold, the technical engineer of the film, and a daughter, Susie, the producer of the film.
Kalinian worked and managed the Hood Photography Studio until he opened his second place of business, Paul’s Photography Studio in Fresno, California, from 1972 through 1992. Kalinian has photographed numerous noted personalities and his works have been published in more than a dozen books.
Yet Paul Kalinian harbored another dream—to find and photograph William Saroyan. After 12 years of failed attempts to track him down, Kalinian finally met Saroyan in 1976. With Kalinian’s persistence, and the charm of an old Armenian song, they became close friends. Kalinian photographed a variety of characteristic portraits of Saroyan; one of which was selected by the USA/USSR Postal Services for their Commemorative Stamps, as a humanitarian symbol of the friendship between the two superpowers. The first-day-issue ceremonies took place simultaneously on May 22, 1991, in Fresno, California, and in Yerevan, Armenia.
The Producer of the film, Dr. Susie Kalinian, who is here with us tonight, received her B.S. degree in Biophysiology, Minors in Armenian Studies and Chemistry, and graduated with honors from California State University at Fresno, in 1994, pursuing graduate work in Epidemiology and Public Health. Kalinian received her D.M.D. degree: Doctor of Dental Medicine, from Tufts University, School of Dental Medicine in Boston, MA in 2002. Dr. Kalinian is currently specializing in Pediatric Dentistry at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and Miami Children’s Hospital. She would eventually like to combine teaching with private practice in California.
Kalinian’s interest in theatre and the arts began at the early age of 11. In 1979, she was accepted as an actor, singer, and dancer at Fresno’s Roger Rocka’s Good Company Players Music Hall. She performed for the next two years in the Theatre’s Junior Company, 7 shows per week, as well as in their production of Fiddler On The Roof. She continued her academic and artistic education at Holland Project Talent Performing Arts Junior High School, and Roosevelt Performing Arts High School, where she graduated in 1987, with honors.
Performing in front of an audience for most of her life, Kalinian welcomed the opportunity to produce behind the scenes for the documentary film, William Saroyan: The Man The Writer, and collaborated with her father, Writer, Director, Paul Kalinian. In addition to being the film’s Producer, Dr. Kalinian’s responsibilities have included script research, costume, make-up, casting, and public relations for the documentary film.
Following Saroyan’s death, Paul Kalinian wrote, directed and with his daughter, Dr. Susie Kalinian, produced William Saroyan: The Man The Writer, a documentary film on the life and works of William Saroyan which you are about to see. The film has won 6 International Film Festival Awards: five for the filmmakers and one for the music composer, including the Gold Award for Best Documentary Film, from the Philadelphia International Film Festival.
Ladies and gentlemen, let’s sit back, relax and enjoy this documentary film on the life and works of internationally renowned Armenian-American, writer, playwright, humanitarian, and Pulitzer Prize Oscar winner, William Saroyan.
We ask that you please make no audio or video recording during the film. Thank you for your cooperation.
And now, the film…
After the Film Show - to be read by the mc
The film you have just seen, William Saroyan: The Man The Writer, has been touring the United States, Canada, England, Australia, Europe, Turkey, the Middle East, and Armenia, under the sponsorship of various organizations; educating the general public on the life and works of William Saroyan, and introducing the Armenian culture to the world.
The world tour began in Fresno, California with Mr. & Mrs. Kalinian & their daughter Dr. Susie Kalinian, in 1991. Since then, the Kalinians have premiered the film in 58 cities in 22 countries. More than one million people around the world have seen this film.
William Saroyan’s spirit and his legacy are still alive and the film is in demand in many parts of the world. The Kalinians will eventually premier the film in South America, Africa, and Japan.
The proceeds of all the film presentations have been donated to the non-profit organizations sponsoring the event.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is my great honor to invite to the podium, the writer and the director of this film, Mr. Paul Kalinian.
Questions & Answers Session with the Kalinians
MC Makes Closing Remarks