Wade on Birmingham

The Future of Birmingham: In Technicolor

Alabama Theatre

Photo: Bahman Farzad (CC)

The historic Alabama Theatre has been home to many color
films over the years. It anchors a growing cultural scene
in Birmingham.

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By Candie A. Price

I may be showing my age, but when I was younger, I remember watching old movies that boasted a color process called Technicolor. Upon further research, I found the words “candy-colored,” “boisterous” and “lush” used to describe its various effects, moods and sensations.

The Future of BirminghamThis process monopolized cinema’s first half-century, accurately producing the full spectrum with amazing results. Although it’s not used nearly as much in today’s filmmaking, the idea of something being in Technicolor intrigues me still.

How do I relate this to Birmingham? As a Philly girl in the South, I am fully aware of Birmingham’s history and need to shed her ugly images, specifically the ruthless acts of domestic terrorism during the civil rights movement. However, 13 years here, I see a Birmingham that is learning, growing and attempting to move forward from her stigma of 1963.

Our city is moving from the black-and-white photos of segregation, hate and racial disunity toward a more welcoming collage in Technicolor. Of course, we have room for improvement in many areas — socio-economic disparity, racial relationships and other issues — that also exist in many cities. Birmingham has a unique opportunity to show the rest of our country, especially in such volatile times, that change, forgiveness, resiliency and vibrancy can happen everywhere, especially in a place formerly dubbed “Bombingham”!

The future of Birmingham is candy-colored, boisterous, lush: a vibrant city wherein people of all walks of life can enjoy the city center; Railroad Park; Uptown; CityFest; a growing foodie scene; neighborhood revitalization via REV Birmingham; museums; top-notch medical research and educational facilities; countless conferences and events for small businesses and entrepreneurs; one of the most philanthropic cities in the country; affordable cost of living; impressive banking center; and a growing diverse cultural climate. Just a few of the strides made in the last five decades.

We still have much work to do, but we are no longer seeing life in Birmingham in terms of black and white. The colors, representing all of our citizens working together and in tandem, can produce a more accurate depiction of what a community should look like. A diverse spectrum, resulting in a dazzlingly rich quality of life for all … in full Technicolor! Our future depends on it, and just like 50 years ago, the world is still watching.

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Candie A. PriceCandie A. Price provides public relations and marketing services to Christian authors, entrepreneurs, ministries and businesses. Her blogs include Your PR Diva and Philly Girl in the South.

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