The World Comes to Sonoma

25 countries, 102 movies but no Alan Rickman. It’s days away from the Sonoma International Film Festival and Kevin McNeely, Claudia Mendoza-Carruth, Ginny Krieger, Chay Woerz, and a hive of colleagues are cheek-by-jowl in a space not much larger than Deborah Emery’s walk-in closet, racing to finalize the configuration of…

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Sebastiani Theater

Roger and Diana Rhoten. Rome has the Parthenon. Paris has Notre Dame. Sydney has the Opera House. And Sonoma has the Sebastiani Theatre. You can’t imagine one without the other. And you can’t imagine the Sebastiani Theatre—the cultural, creative, and cinematic hub of the town—without Roger and Diana Rhoten, who have…

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Waiting For Rickman

Severous Snape, Where are you? The last time Alan Rickman was in Sonoma he was busy organizing the Judgment of Paris, wherein Napa winery Chateau Montelena beat the best French chardonnay, ushering California wine into global respectability and bestowing enological cred on Napa and, by association, Sonoma. Rickman played real-life…

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That Darn Sign

50 feet of controversy, creativity,  and community connection. First created in 2009, the increasingly iconic, periodically contentious, and undeniably prominent SONOMAWOOD sign erected on the Plaza horseshoe to herald the Sonoma International Film Festival was never intended to become a festival beacon or a continuing agenda item for the Sonoma…

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