In addition to family histories, Books & Lives has preserved print and video records of the accomplishments of almost one hundred Bay Area music, dance, and theater artists. Much of this work was produced in conjunction with the Museum of Performance & Design’s Legacy Oral History Program, founded by Jeff Friedman, PhD. These oral histories, many funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, have been placed in public, university, museum, and special interest libraries.


Click on the photos below to learn more about each artist.


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Evelyn Cisneros, Prima Ballerina

Cisneros danced at the White House with San Francisco Ballet and was hailed as America's first Latina ballerina. Her beauty, strength, and technique inspired artistic director Michael Smuin to create lead roles for her in his original productions. Full-life oral history funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Interviewer and senior editor, Basya Petnick.