Susheel Bibbs, PhD.
Filmmaker-performer Susheel Bibbs (Susheel) is an acclaimed touring singer, an author, and an award-winning director-filmmaker. She also heads the new Living Heritage Foundation in Sacramento. Bibbs tours for screenings and performances as an actress and singer, and continues work on Independent films.
In music, she graduated from the Boston University School for the Arts in Opera and the New England Conservatory of Music in Vocal Performance. sang with many opera companies where she won international acclaim. Bibbs made her touring recital entitled The Unsung Muse, Classical Song of Black Composers into her first independent film. Her films always combine her talents as a writer, filmmaker, and performer.
Among these are the TV special called An Unsung Muse (Classical Song of Black Composers), the award-winning Meet Mary Pleasant, Mother of Civil Rights in California, which screened on PBS from 2009-2017, at the Cannes Film Festival (Marche du Film), and won five film festival and one California Telly Award. Her new film has a June 2017 debut --It is a short on The Hyers Sisters, 19th century divas who created the first musical and fought for human dignity.
Bibbs was one the youngest PBS Executive Producer and was one of the first recipients of the Keeper of the Spiritual Award by Friends of Negro Spirituals, Inc. In 1999 Bibbs received the title "foremost expert on Mary Ellen Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California)" from the Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco in their Highest Commendation, which cited her outstanding contributions to the arts and humanities
See Awards/Activities listings below
Key Web site: www.susheelbibbs.com
- TV short: An Unsung Muse (Classical Song of Black Composers), KTOP-TV, Oakland, Amazon.com (DVD, VoD)
- Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California) National PBS, KVIE-TV (short and feature versions), Amazon.com (DVD, VoD)
- Book: Heritage of Power, DVD: Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights),
Screenings: Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights) -- feature version 2009-2017; short version 2007-2016 on Film Festivals across the US and on Public Television.
- The Art of the Spiritual -- a touring master class.
- Voices for Freedom! -- National multimedia lectures with song on The Hyers Sisters (African-American activist divas of the 1880's) -- (also a film short) 2012-2016.
- Meet Mary Pleasant and Before Martin There Was Mary -- International lectures on Mary Pleasant 1999-201l
- Meet Mary Pleasant -- a touring one-woman show (chautauqua) 60-90 min.
- Keeper of the Spiritual Award -- Friends of Negro Spirituals, Oakland
- Two CPB Best Program Awards for dramatic radio productions
- An Action for Children's Television Award
- A national Emmy as Executive Producer at WGBH-TV, Boston, for ZOOM TV series
- Six Independent-Film Awards, including --
- A Peace Reel Medallion (Berkeley Film and Video Festival) '07 for The Legacy of Mary Ellen Pleasant--Best Short: Meet Mary Pleasant
- A Silver Telly (broadcast award--California Telly Awards) '08 for The Legacy of Mary Ellen Pleasant (on KVIE, CA Public TV)
- "Best Historical Documentary" Feature, '07 (The New York International, Independent Film Festival -NYIFVF), Hollywood-- Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California)
- “Best Director of a Documentary” Feature '09 (NYIFVF), New York --Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California)
- “The Gold Kahuna Award for Excellence in Filmmaking” 2010 (Honolulu International Film Festival), Feature: Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights), which was screened at Cannes '08.
- HBFF Finalist Ribbon, Feature: -- Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California)
- Personal Awards: Certificate Awards/Commendations for contributions to humanities and music: Touring Artist Awards: California Arts Council, MO Arts Council, MO Role Model Experiences Program, St. Louis, Callfornia Humanities performance grants; The Highest Commendation of the Supervisors of the City and County of San Francisco; The California African American Museum Certificate Award for Contributions to Women's History, Certificate of Acceptance:The National Parks Service, Certificate of Award for Community Contributions in the Arts: St. Louis City Museum.
A Writer's Digest Book Award, '99 for her book on Pleasant --Heritage of Power (now on amazon.com, kindle -- 2011 revised or enlarge