Student Run News Site of Venice High School

The Oarsman

Student Run News Site of Venice High School

The Oarsman

Student Run News Site of Venice High School

The Oarsman

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Oscar-Nominated Doc Highlights LAUSD’s Music Program

Filmmakers Ben Proudfoot and Kris Bowers’ ‘The Last Repair Shop’ shares LAUSD stories
Reading Time: 2 minutes

In the heart of Los Angeles, there is a small music repair shop run by a handful of extraordinary craftspeople. Here they work
every day to upkeep musical instruments so that students in LAUSD can have access to ones that are pristine and working.

For years, their work has gone unnoticed to the masses until now when it has just been showcased in Oscar-nominated documentary “The Last Repair Shop.”

This film by directors Ben Proudfoot and Kris Bowers highlights the stories of four repair people who have had their lives changed by music and now are making sure that LAUSD students have this opportunity as well.

One of the directors, Ben Proudfoot, was sent an old news article about the repair shop. He was so inspired by the change that the repair shop was making that he and his friend Bowers embarked on the journey of making this documentary.

“It was an amazing emotional jackpot,” Proudfoot said. “A love letter to Los Angeles.”

The documentary features four of the shop’s craftspeople; Dana Atkinson, Duane Michaels, Paty Moreno, and Steve Bagmanyan.

Throughout the film each of them tell their incredibly unique and emotional stories about how music has changed their lives for the better.

“They are all stories about being broken and then repaired by music,” Proudfoot said.

Last November, Venice students, along with other LAUSD students, were given the opportunity to see the premiere of this film as a field trip.

Community School Coordinator and former music teacher David Lee accompanied students on the field trip.

“As music teachers, we barely get enough funding for one instrument let alone repairs,” he

“The repair shop is an invaluable resource to all the music teachers in the district.”

This film recognized the unsung heroes that work tirelessly to make sure that music education does not fall to the side.

It was beautiful to see how these repair people upkeep instruments so that LAUSD students have the opportunity to find the passion that they did.

As said by the shop’s woodwind repairman Duane Michaels, “You do whatever it takes because that one instrument could change their whole life.”

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