About Us

Friday, March 11

Wildcard Movie: Race to Nowhere

The Music Hall, the landmark Victorian theatre in downtown Portsmouth, has announced its Wildcard Movie for March, the documentary Road to Nowhere, directed by Vicki Abeles.  The film will be shown on Wednesday March 23 at 7pm followed by a panel-discussion and Q&A session with experts from the Seacoast community.

In this documentary, Mother turned filmmaker Vicki Abeles challenges current assumptions on how to best prepare the youth of America to become healthy, bright, contributing and leading citizens, questioning the current “one size fits all” method of education. It is a close up look at the pressures that are put on students today and the overburdened schedules to which so many find themselves enslaved. Parents are expected to raise high achieving children, and because of this students are being pushed to the brink and suicide has become a prominent issue. Interviews with students, educators, and parents give insight into what is going on in today’s educational system, and Abeles digs into what is wrong with it and how it can be fixed. It is destroying our children’s love of learning and feeding an epidemic of unprepared, disengaged, and unhealthy students. This remarkable new film shines a light on the price our kids pay for this “race to nowhere.”

About the post-film panel
The film will be followed by a panel-discussion and Q&A featuring educators and other experts from the Seacoast community:  Spaulding High School Principal John Shea who is spearheading The Big Step Forward, a secondary school restructuring initiative in Rochester will again contribute to the discussion.

According to Chris Curtis, Film and Outreach Coordinator, “This Wildcard Movie is particularly relevant today and to our audience here on the Seacoast. Educators tell me of their concern about complacency - that there is a perception that problems with public schools are only in the inner city and not ones we have here on the Seacoast. This follow-up to January’s Waiting for Superman, will be a another great opportunity to see one filmmaker’s take on the American educational system, to hear from local educators about their view of our challenges in our schools, and to engage in a conversation with our audience about where we are and where we need to go. All in all, a night not to be missed!” 

Praise for Race to Nowhere
“You’ll be inspired to make some changes, big and small, for the health of your kids” – Oprah.com

“Another Inconvenient Truth” - George Lucas Educational Foundation

“Abeles points to the silent epidemic running rampant in our schools as well as a cure” – Ilya Tovlas, Mill Valley Film Fesitval

“A reminder of the human and societal costs of our current education system” – Dr. Jim Taylor, Education Blogger, Psychology Today

“A dire warning and solid piece of advocacy journalism, complete with an action checklist at film’s end.”  - Los Angeles Times

“Ms. Abeles believes that benevolent intervention is an adult’s most powerful tool.” - New York Times


Wildcard Movie: About/Sponsors
About: Global Issues, Local Resources Meet the Artists. Meet the Experts. Discuss. Participate. Compelling documentaries on topics from health, finance, sports, art, politics to- you name it! Followed by a discussion and Q&A.  Once each month.
Series sponsors:  BayRing Communications; Cocked Hat Ventures, LLC; WSCA 106.1FM; Homewood Suites by Hilton in Portsmouth, NH; Fosters Daily Democrat

About The Music Hall: An American Treasure for the Arts
The Music Hall is a nonprofit performing arts center that entertains 100,000 patrons, including 20,000 school children, annually with acclaimed film, music, theater, and dance performances. Its historic 900-seat theater, built in 1878, is the oldest in New Hampshire and designated an “American Treasure” by the U.S. Senate in the Save America’s Treasures Program administered by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the National Park Service. Living out its mission to be an active and vital arts center for the enrichment of the Seacoast community, The Music Hall presents diverse and relevant programming, including its signature series and innovative community outreach programs, and hosts numerous community fundraisers and celebrations for the benefit of more than 40 local nonprofits.  A cultural anchor in a thriving Seacoast economy, The Music Hall and its patrons contribute $5.5 million annually to the local economy through show and visitor related spending. The Music Hall is a 501c3 tax exempt, fiscally responsible nonprofit organization, managed by a professional staff with the assistance of a dedicated volunteer Board of Trustees. The historic hall is located in Portsmouth, the seaport city recently named a “Distinctive Destination” by National Trust for Historic Preservation and one of the “20 Best Towns in America” by Outside magazine. For more information about The Music Hall and its schedule of events, visit http://www.themusichall.org.

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