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Alum, Conductor Earns Telly Awards for Documentary

Henry Panion
June 15, 2020

"Dreams of Hope"

Alabama A&M University alumnus Henry Panion III, who was a major force in the production of the February 13 Alabama Public Television (APT) concert documen­tary “Dreams of Hope,” has received critical acclaim via the Telly Awards for excellence in video and television.

The 41st annual Telly Awards awarded the film the Gold Telly for Education and 12 Silver and Bronze awards for music, directing, editing, social impact, writing, cinematography and other categories.

Panion is a composer, ar­ranger, conductor and pro­fessor in the Department of Music at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.  The professor produced and co-directed (with filmmaker David L. Macon) the documentary, as well as provided original music.

“Dreams of Hope” tells the story of a historic con­cert at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birming­ham, more than 50 years after a hate crime there that killed four African Ameri­can girls.

Conducted by Panion, the con­cert performance features musical instruments that serve as symbols of hope—among them violins restored from Holocaust concentration camps. The documentary adds behind-the-scenes inter­views which help celebrate the resilience of those who have faced hate, discrimina­tion and racism.

“Dreams of Hope” received the following awards:


Gold Telly, Television: Education

Silver Telly, Television: Editing

Silver Telly, Television: Use of Music

Silver Telly, Television: Videography/Cinematography

Silver Telly, Television: Documentary: Individual

Silver Telly, Television: Social Impact

Silver Telly, Branded Content: Editing

Silver Telly, Branded Content: Campaign: Social Responsibility

Bronze Telly, Television: Writing

Bronze Telly, Television: Cultural

Bronze Telly, Branded Content, Directing

Bronze Telly, Branded Content, Videography/Cinematography

Bronze Telly, Branded Content: Documentary: Individual


Concert footage also features the premiere of “Dreams of Hope for Solo Violin & Orchestra” by acclaimed composer and conductor Panion, commissioned especially for this concert. Alongside the Dreams of Hope Orchestra, the concert features vocalists Valerie Smith and Lenora Goodman-Panion, dancer Kelsey Ebersold, and the Miles College Choir.

Presented and distributed by American Public Television, it has had more than 300 separate broadcast airings on public television stations nationwide since its premiere in February and has been highlighted during both Black History Month and Jewish Holocaust Remembrance holidays.

(Photo: UAB)