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May 20
1946 - Cher, great-granddaughter of Placerita Canyon homesteader Frank Walker and onetime Placerita property owner, born in El Centro, Calif. [story]
Cher and grandma


| Thursday, Apr 4, 2024
Lou Florimonte
Lou Florimonte was a California Institute of the Arts alumnus and beloved longtime faculty member. | Photo: Courtesy of the Florimonte Family.


The California Institute of the Arts community mourns the loss of beloved teacher and alumnus Lou Florimonte (Film/Video MFA 77), who died last month. He taught in the School of Theater and then the School of Film/ Video from 1979 until his retirement from CalArts in 2005.

Florimonte began his career as a journalist and playwright, then worked in television before becoming head of the theater program and chairman of Communications Arts at the Lindenwood Colleges in St. Charles, Missouri. His work was produced off-off-Broadway, and he came to CalArts to pursue his MFA in 1977.

In 1985, he co-founded the Directing for Theater, Video and Cinema Program (DTVC) with Alexander Mackendrick and Gill Dennis and served as program head from 1994 to his retirement. The program began with a single student and evolved into today’s Film Directing Program; nearly 20 years after his departure, his teaching and his example remain fundamental to the program.

Florimonte was an inspiring, profoundly empathetic teacher. He taught all aspects of filmmaking and directing, grounding all his work in a profound understanding of structure and character as well as an insistence on rigorous self-examination and constant revision. His affable, loving approach always demonstrated that there is great joy in the hard work of creation.

His tireless dedication to his students —he seemed to put as much of himself into his responses to their work as they had in its creation— was rewarded with fierce devotion. Generations of screenwriters and directors cite him as fundamental to their practice.

After his retirement, Florimonte and his wife Alex resettled in Denver and then Santa Cruz. He was devoted to his sons Arik and Cory and grandson Shane. He continued writing and cooking (and helped former students with their new projects), even after his 2011 diagnosis with Parkinson’s disease. Florimonte lived his whole life with courage, intentionality and love. Perhaps it was these qualities that allowed him to live even the challenging final years of his life with such fortitude.

The Film Directing Showcase screening on May 3 at REDCAT is dedicated to his memory. His family would be grateful for contributions to EASE PD, Inc, the local Parkinson’s nonprofit in Santa Cruz, or to the Michael J Fox Foundation, which supports essential on-going research toward a cure of the disease.

— CalArts School of Film/Video

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HIGHER EDUCATION LINKS
LOCAL COLLEGE HEADLINES
Thursday, May 16, 2024
Entertainment trade publication Variety recently released its 2024 ranking of the top film schools in North America, with California Institute of the Arts named a “Film School Titan." The "Titan" designation places CalArts among the top five film schools on the continent.
Thursday, May 16, 2024
The sunny spring day of Friday, May 10 saw a burst of sculptural flora sprouting on the stage of Graduation Courtyard at California Institute of the Arts. Designed around a botanical theme, the 2024 CalArts graduation heralded a celebration of growth and new beginnings for this year’s graduating class, many of whom began their CalArts journey during the pandemic.
Wednesday, May 15, 2024
Members of the graduating class of 2024 found a home at California State University, Northridge. It was a place that empowered them and gave them the tools to break cultural and generational barriers, and to fulfill dreams first imagined decades earlier.
Tuesday, May 14, 2024
The College of the Canyons Athletic Department has announced its intention to hire longtime Ventura College top assistant Robin Hester, as the next head coach of the Cougars’ women’s basketball program. Hester is expected to begin his new role in summer 2024.
Monday, May 13, 2024
California State University, Northridge students took center stage at a National Institutes of Health conference and presented the results of their own research studies to an audience of medical professionals and prospective medical students.
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