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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Pandit Chitresh Das, Dancer/Teacher

Born and trained in India, Chitresh Das, wearing 100 bells on each leg, mesmerized American audiences with his powerful performances of katak, south Indian dance. He has trained scores of western dancers in this great art form and has led many of his students at his Chitresh Das School of Dance to acclaim. Video interviews of subject's life in India and America funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Lily Kharrazi, interviewer. Basya Petnick, producer.