New York, NY — September 7, 2013

In Celebration of the Italian Spirit

Singer/Songwriter/Producer Michéal Castaldo Plans
Free Art Exhibit in Conjunction with His Concert, Sept. 21

South Orange, New Jersey—Celebrated musical artist Michéal Castaldo has organized a special showcase of art that exalts the glories of Italy and her people. The exhibit of original artwork—created by 15 professional artists—will be on display in the Grand Lobby of the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) in South Orange, New Jersey, on September 21, 2014.
Artists selected to participate in the art exhibit will include renowed Italian artists Andrea Viviani, Claudia Giraudo, Dorianno Tosarelli, Giuseppe Bianco, Lido Bettarini, Pillino, Rubens Fogacci, and Salvatore Magazzini, all represented by the Just Art Gallery in Providence, Rhode Island; Italian artist Yleni Mino of New York, New York; American artists Colette Shumate Smith, David Smith and Luann Hume of Leominster, Massachusetts; Greek artist Iphigenia Burg of Fitchburg, Massachusetts; German artist Ilse Buchert Nesbitt of The Third and Elm Press in Newport, Rhode Island; and American editorial photographer Simao Ago of Newark, New Jersey.
The framed artwork on display will be part of a Silent Auction benefiting La Dolce Vita Foundation (www.ladolcevitafoundation.org), a nonprofit organization founded by Michéal Castaldo to grant severely ill children, teens, or adults with the ultimate “Joy Ride” in a classic, exotic, two-seat convertible roadster designed for Driving the Blues Away™.
The Art Exhibit is open to the public from noon to 8:30 pm. Admission to the exhibit is free. The Silent Auction winners will be announced at 8:30 pm.
The art exhibit is being held in conjunction with A Musical Celebration of the Italian Spirit—A Feast for the Ears, Eyes, and Soul, Michéal Castaldo’s première performance at SOPAC, which is sponsored by Investors Bank and produced by Majestic Castle Music, of New York City. There will be two distinctly different shows, a 2 p.m. matinee, and a 6:30 p.m. evening performance. Each show runs 90 minutes, with a 15 minute intermission.
Professional dancers from the Rocha Dance Theater will perform vibrant routines to compliment the songs performed by Castaldo, and The John J. Cali School of Music Strings will accompany Castaldo. Stunning visuals of beautiful Italian landscapes will appear on a large projection screen above the stage throughout each show.
Tickets to the Italian Cultural Event may be purchased at http://www.sopacnow.org/450/MichaelCastaldo, where ticket prices range from $37 to $57. For more information, please call SOPAC at 973-313-ARTS(2787).
For questions and further details regarding the art exhibit, contact the exhibit coordinator, Tamar Russell Brown, at 718-974-3328 or tamar@sitkacreations.com.

Shirley, MA — September 6, 2014

Jen Hemenway at ART Sundays event September 7

Graffiti artist/painter Jen Hemenway will have a solo show at the studios of Sitka Creations in Shirley, Sunday, September 7th.

A native Bostonian, Jen Hemenway began cartooning at an early age and first came to public notice during her days in Minneapolis in the ’90s. Coming of age in the “zine scene,” Jen created her own comic book, 55407, and launched her own small business, 55407 komix.

Ms. Hemenway is a native of Massachusetts, where she began to exhibit her work at such venues as Roslindale Open Studios in Boston and galleries in Melrose and Provincetown. She really hit her stride with the founding of her custom skateboard company, Upside Skate Decks. Though she continues to paint on metal, recycled wood and canvas, perhaps her most popular painting surface is the skateboard. The mayor of Leominster famously bought a longboard that Ms. Hemenway had painted “live” on a busy street in town, then raffled it off to a local art aficionado. A local orthodontist displays her work at his offices in Gardner and Leominster, testifying to this artist/entrepreneur’s continuing popularity in Central Mass.

She will display her work in a solo show for the month of September.

The event will be held at the studios of Sitka Creations at The Phoenix Park, 2 Shaker Road, Suite D101, in Shirley, Mass., on Sunday, September 7, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

For more information, please call 978.425.6290 or send an email to: info@sitkacreations.com. Find us on Facebook.com/sitkacreations, on Twitter.com/sitkacreations, and at sitkacreations.com.

Call for ARTWORK:

A Celebration of the Italian Spirit

The lifelong theme of Michéal Castaldo’s career is the expansion of Italian culture around the world. To continue that quest, Mr. Castaldo has organized a special showcase of art to exalt the glories of Italy and her people.

The selected artwork will be presented in the Grand Lobby of the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) in South Orange, New Jersey. The art show will accompany a double performance (2PM & 6:30PM) by Italian tenor/ songwriter/producer Michéal Castaldo on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014. Expected attendance is 800.

The performance will include a modern Italian dance group and a string quartet. Stunning visuals of Italian landscapes will appear on a large projection screen. Artists everywhere are invited to submit one painting, drawing, montage or any other medium in two-dimensional format, no larger than 24˝ Å~ 18˝. The artwork should be properly framed with all hanging materials already attached, though all work will be displayed on easels. A security guard will be hired to protect the artwork.

Artists should feel free to be as expansive and expressive as they like within this format, but all work must relate to the positive side of Italy and Italian culture in whatever form the artists devise.

Please email a high-resolution JPEG file of the work to Tamar Russell Brown at tamar@sitkacreations.com for review no later than 6 p.m. EST, Aug. 15, 2014.

Selected works must be shipped w/ tracking # no later than Monday, Sept. 15, 2014, to:

South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC)

1 SOPAC Way

South Orange, NJ 07079

Attn: Mr. Raf Ricci c/o Mr. Michéal Castaldo

A nonrefundable $25.00 entry fee must accompany the artwork. (Make Check to Michéal Castaldo.) Most of these proceeds will be used to ship the work back to the artist (USA only) in the event that no bids are offered for the work. The artist mustvprovide his or her name, a complete return address, the title of the work, and a 100-word bio. Please also specify the dimensions, medium, and your wholesale base price of the work. Send this info, plus the tracking # of your package to tamar@sitkacreations.com

The work will be displayed in Silent Auction format. The starting bid price will be the artist’s wholesale base price, plus whatever our Board may decide to add. The monies received in excess of the starting price will be contributed to Michéal Castaldo’s La Dolce Vita Foundation. (See http://www.ladolcevitafoundation.org for moreinformation.) Naturally, should a buyer enter a bid, payment of the wholesale base price of the artist’s work will be mailed to her or him no later than 21 business days after the event.

Michéal Castaldo is a classical-crossover singer. He has discovered that his audience conforms to a certain demographic profile: His fans are usually affluent, educated, cultured professionals over 55, who are often well-traveled and speak several languages. 60% of his fans are female.

Tickets may be purchased at http://www.sopacnow.org/450/MichaelCastaldo For moreinformation about tickets ($37 – $57), please call SOPAC at 973-313-ARTS(2787).

For questions regarding this event contact: Tamar Russell Brown at 718.974.3328 or tamar@sitkacreations.com

New York, NY — June 30, 2014 We love to help our friends get their press out there! Here is some PR for an event that we support and will attend!

Award-winning Italian tenor, songwriter, and producer, Michéal Castaldo will perform A Musical Celebration of the Italian Spirit—A Feast for the Ears, Eyes, and Soul at the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) on Sunday, September 21, 2014.

Michéal Castaldo is the living embodiment of authentic Italian culture. A native of Calabria in the “tip of the toe” of Italy, he is an accomplished pop-classical crossover singer of his native songs.

Over the past ten years Michéal Castaldo has entertained more than 500,000 people across the USA, Canada, and Europe with creative and rousing renditions of classic Italian songs. With a voice that soothes the soul, Castaldo’s performances are enchanting, heartfelt, and authentic. He treats the audience to stories in between songs that share moments from his Italian upbringing, tidbits about his musical journey, and insight that went into his song choices.

Continuing its long tradition of support for the performing arts in New Jersey, Investors Bank is thrilled to sponsor Michéal Castaldo’s première performance at SOPAC. It will consist of two distinct shows, a matinee at 2 p.m. and an evening performance at 6:30 p.m. In addition to classic Italian tunes like O Sole Mio, Con Te Partiro (a song made famous by Andrea Bocelli), and the chart-topping original song, Pray’r, the song list will include American hit songs sung in Italian, such as Nights in White Satin and Hotel California sung in the Calabrian language. Castaldo’s shows are fully staged cultural multimedia music and dance events that will feature spectacular visual imagery.

Choreography by award-winning Sicilian-born Saveria Tumino accentuates the vitality and physical prowess of the Hyblart Dance Company, direct from Sicily, who will perform vibrant dance routines to compliment the music for every song performed by Castaldo. The John J. Cali School of Music Strings will accompany Castaldo. Their participation in this concert is made possible, in part, by a donation from The Coccia Foundation. Special guest performers will round out the entertainment experience.

Beautiful scenes, vistas, and landscapes of Italy alongside images of classic Italian films will be projected throughout the entire theater space. Driven by the dancers’ passion, skill, and collective power, the concert was created over a three-year developmental process. The lush musical production and score were co-authored and co-produced by Michéal Castaldo. It is infused with the infectious energy and heart that he observed in his initial encounters with the Hyblart dancers.

Dignitaries, VIPs, and personalities in the Italian-American community are expected to attend this exciting cultural event because it is one of the Italian Heritage and Culture Month celebrations that will be taking place in and around New York City during Fall 2014.

A Musical Celebration of the Italian Spirit—A Feast for the Ears, Eyes, and Soul at SOPAC (www.sopacnow.org) is sponsored by Investors Bank (www.myinvestorsbank.com), headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, and produced by Majestic Castle Music (www.michealCASTALDO.com), of New York City. A portion of the net proceeds will benefit La Dolce Vita Foundation (www.ladolcevitafoundation.org).

Additional sponsors include The Coccia Foundation (www.cocciafoundation.org), Saddle Brook, NJ; The Gables Historic Inn & Restaurant (www.gableslbi.com), Beach Haven, NJ; Sempre Avanti, Inc. (www.sempreavanti.org), Cedar Grove, NJ; NJAWBO MetroEast (www.njawbo-metroeast.org), Essex County, NJ; and Woodpecker Press (www.woodpeckerpress.com), Bayville, NJ.

Tickets go on sale Monday, June 23. For tickets ($37–$57 plus processing fees), call 973-313-ARTS (2787) or visit the SOPAC Box Office located at One SOPAC Way, South Orange NJ, 07079. The SOPAC Box Office is open Monday–Saturday, 12–6 p.m. Tickets may also be purchased online at http://www.sopacnow.org/450/MichaelCastaldo. For questions or comments, contact 877-642-7271.
For patrons purchasing tickets to both shows, (2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.), there will be a special VIP Meet and Greet Reception and Olive Oil Tasting backstage with all the artists/dancers and musicians between shows. The VIP reception is being sponsored by NewYorkCityOliveOilCoop.com.

The Hyblart Dance Company is the first professional dance company located in the town of Ragusa in the region of Sicily, Italy. The Dance Company was founded in 2008 by Mrs. Saveria Tumino (director, choreographer, and dancer) and her partner Mr. Andrea Panuzzo, inspired by their desire to bring the necessary emphasis on dance to a region that unfortunately lacks the culture for the art of dance. The company’s purpose is to promote contemporary dance by linking it to other forms of expression, such as artistic acting, visual arts, and opera, in order to find acclaim from a wider spread audience. The company’s productions create strong emotions within the audience inspired by the dynamics of the movements as well as the use of music composed by talented Hyblean artists, who often reference great classical and contemporary composers.

The John J. Cali School of Music Strings: Under the direction of cellist Nicholas Tzavaras (Shanghai String Quartet), senior music students have performed works by Britten, Haydn, Grieg, and Barber. In addition to performing on campus, they have performed at Barge Music and Carnegie Hall’s Weill Auditorium. The exceptional music students joined Michéal Castaldo at his Italian Christmas concert in December 2013 at St. Lucy’s Church in Newark, NJ.

SOPAC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit performing arts organization that delivers artistic, educational, and innovative experiences within an intimate, inviting environment, and promotes regional involvement in the arts, serving as a catalyst for economic development and continued revitalization of South Orange’s downtown business district.

Presenting Sponsor: Investors Bank proudly and actively supports social, community, and cultural organizations across New Jersey and New York. Headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey, is a full-service community bank that has been serving customers since 1926. With a network of more than 125 retail branches, Investors’ consumer banking services include complete deposit products, online banking, home equity loans and lines of credit, and a full array of mortgage loans. Serving the business community, Investors provides deposit accounts, cash management services, business loans and lines of credit, and commercial real estate financing solutions.

Benefitting: La Dolce Vita Foundation’s mission is to foster that feeling of “La Dolce Vita” (which means “the Sweet Life”) by granting severely ill children, teens, or adults with the ultimate “Joy Ride” in a classic, exotic, two-seat convertible roadster designed for Driving the Blues Away™. The privately owned roadster is a one-of-a-kind 1993 MX-5 Mazda Miata–La Dolce Vita Edition for our select grant recipients to enjoy and talk about. A sophisticated video system tapes the entire trip inside and outside the car. A souvenir DVD of the Joy Ride and photos taken during the ride are given to the patient to commemorate the experience. And, through the Foundation’s sponsorship relationships with great restaurants, a complimentary lunch or brunch with the grant recipient follows the ride.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 11, 2014

Contact: Tamar Russell — 718.974.3328

Two Inspiring Central Mass Artists Discuss the Life of Art
and the Art of Life at ART Sundays event July 6

Painter, teacher and arts administrator Iphigenia Gossios Burg teams up with cutting-edge cartoonist and painter Jen Hemenway to talk about their lives in the arts on the first Sunday in July at the studios of Sitka Creations in Shirley.

Ms. Gossios Burg’s European background — her childhood in Greece and her teen years in Vienna, Austria — contrasts with her accomplished arts career in the United States. After completing her art education at UMass Boston, she lived the life of an arts professional with the U.S. Center for World Mission in Pasadena, Calif., also teaching art to middle school and high school students. Her training in such media as oil-pastels, charcoal, and oil and acrylic paints led to her expansion into other media, notably the tapestries, murals and other large-scale projects that are still on display in her old stomping grounds in California.

Returning to New England, Iphigenia branched out into new methods of painting as well as to a new field for her, art jewelry. She has also come into her own here in Central Mass as an arts administrator, currently serving on the Board of Directors of the Leominster Art Center & Gallery.


A native Bostonian, Jen Hemenway began cartooning at an early age and first came to public notice during her days in Minneapolis in the ’90s. Coming of age in the “zine scene,” Jen created her own comic book, 55407, and launched her own small business, 55407 komix. She published her cartoons and distributed her comic book in Minnesota and other states.

Like her colleague Ms. Gossios Burg, Ms. Hemenway also came home to Massachusetts, where she began to exhibit her work at such venues as Roslindale Open Studios in Boston and galleries in Melrose and Provincetown. She really hit her stride with the founding of her custom skateboard company, Upside Skate Decks. Though she continues to paint

on metal, recycled wood and canvas, perhaps her most popular painting surface is the skateboard. The mayor of Leominster famously bought a longboard that Ms. Hemenway had painted “live” on a busy street in town, then raffled it off to a local art aficionado. A local orthodontist displays her work at his offices in Gardner and Leominster, testifying to this artist/entrepreneur’s continuing popularity in Central Mass.

These two charismatic creators will display their work and give their audience an inside view of their always interesting lives in the art world at this installment of ART Sundays.


The event will be held at the studios of Sitka Creations at The Phoenix Park, 2 Shaker Road, Suite D101, in Shirley, Mass., on Sunday, July 6, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

For more information, please call 978.425.6290 or send an email to: info@sitkacreations.com. Find us on Facebook.com/sitkacreations, on Twitter.com/sitkacreations, and at sitkacreations.com.

 

New York, NY — May 28, 2014  Michéal Castaldo has been an NYC Contact & Friend of ours for several years. Here is a highlight of his most recent endeavors and accomplishments.
By Euletha Dukes
Music is that one art form that we always want to experience for ourselves, and not just read about. From listening to that debut album from a new artist, to listening to classics you loved back in high school. From being wowed at a concert in an outdoor stadium, to being stirred by a world-class instrumentalist performing in a music hall. From learning to play an instrument, to composing your own music, and maybe even your own lyrics!—these are all ways we can totally immerse ourselves in that magical language we call music.

We recently spoke with one of our favorite musicians, Michéal Castaldo, about his success story. Being an Italian-American musician with roots in the southern Italian province of Calabria, Mr. Castaldo has carved out a niche for himself in the pop-classical crossover scene. Going strong for 30 years in the music industry, this talented recording artist shows no sign of slowing down.

Mr. Castaldo’s interest in singing dates back to his church choir days, when at the tender age of nine he earned praise for his pint-sized vocal chops. In high school he found himself totally steeped in music, joining the chorus and taking up trumpet, guitar and piano. After high school, he refined his musicianship at Berklee School of Music in Boston. The next move took him to New York City to pursue a professional music career. It was here in New York that he refined his skills as a songwriter and producer. It was also here that he grew from a budding recording artist to a successful, multi-talented, music-industry entrepreneur.

Early on in his career, Mr. Castaldo found a measure of success composing music and writing lyrics in English. But after noticing an overwhelmingly positive response to his Italian lyrics, he decided to reinvent his sound, writing and performing strictly in Italian. This proved to be a wise move — it propelled him into the international music scene, opening more doors than he ever could have imagined. Earlier this year, he was invited to perform at a concert in Calabria in memory of the late Mino Reitano, a popular Italian singer and actor. This music festival was only the most recent of many events in Italy where Mr. Castaldo has been a featured performer. He has also toured extensively throughout the U.S. and Canada.

If there’s anything that Mr. Castaldo prides himself on, it is his live performances. He transports his audience to Calabria by means of an onstage screen that displays breathtaking vistas of that remarkable southern Italian landscape. The music sets the tone and sweeps you along with its majestic sound, creating nostalgic moments for the Italians in his audience. Even the non-Italians find themselves getting nostalgic for la bella Italia. Then his voice comes in, a flawless tenor with a rich tone and steady vibrato, harmoniously weaving his stories into his compelling melodies. It’s almost as if he’s getting you to reminisce about a time and place you’ve never even experienced.

Mr. Castaldo’s approach to creating music is an organic one, which may explain why fans are so deeply moved by it. “I believe in living in the moment and taking it all in, and I strive for authenticity. Something that brings the story home. The good, the bad, the exhilarating…the disappointments…those enthusiastic moments… You have to have your guard down to be open to what goes on around you. We turn to music for those milestone moments. It marks happy occasions, but we also use it to grieve. Music is therapy. Music is healing.” Beautiful words spoken about beautiful music.

It’s no wonder we like him so much! For more information, check out http://www.michaelcastaldo.com/  

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 8, 2014

Sitka Creations to Host Mass Nature Photographer, Paul Sihvonen-Binder,  at ART SUNDAYS event June 1st

Stretch

Photographer Paul Sihvonen-Binder will display his enchanting photos of the beautiful Quabbin Reservoir area on the first Sunday in June at the studios of Sitka Creations in Shirley. In-state and out-of-state adventurers won’t want to miss this showing of surprising nature photography as we gear up for the summer outdoors activities season in New England.

Quabbin is important for practical reasons because it supplies much of the Boston area’s fresh water supply. It is also a precious jewel for the commonwealth of Massachusetts simply by virtue of its stunning natural beauty. The General Court (the official name of the commonwealth legislature) dammed three branches of the Swift River about 60 to 70 miles east of Boston in the mid-nineteenth century to create the reservoir. In that age before nature conservation became fashionable, the people of Massachusetts set a very progressive precedent by relying primarily on watershed protection rather than filtration. In other words, they wisely made a commitment to preserving the wild and unspoiled character of the area as the best way to protect the purity of the water supply. Sihovonen-Binder’s photographs certainly make this plain. His photos of native wildlife and flourishing forests in Quabbin show off the area to best advantage. Both newcomers and longtime Mass residents will enjoy this display of the photographer’s art in documenting the state’s precious natural heritage.

The event will be held at The Mill — the studios of Sitka Creations at The Phoenix Park, 2 Shaker Road, Suite D101 — in Shirley, Mass., on Sunday, June 1, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

For more information, please call 978.425.6290 or send an email to: info@sitkacreations.com. See also facebook.com/sitkacreations.com

Shirley, MA — April 29, 2014 We invite you to our first OPEN House and ART Event in our Studio.

Here are the details in regard to our first event:

12square

MAY ARTISTS:

David L Smith | Colette Aline Shumate Smith | http://arcartfurniture.com/

New Artists Work in Furniture, Wall Art, Ceramics, and Painting.

Sunday, May 4th from 2 to 5 P.M.
at Sitka Creations, 2 Shaker Road, D101, Shirley, MA 01464 (in the main entrance, at The Phoenix Park).

We will have guest piano player John Hansen here, in addition to some light Hors d’oeuvres.

Come see some Unique Art for office or home that will inspire you to:

Reclaim | Reuse & Resonate | Raku | Recycle | Realistic | RenaissanceNior | Urban | Rural | Rough | Beautiful Ruins | Remember | Re-purpose | Reconstructions | Real | Reflections

New York, NY — Feb.. 21, 2014 We love our clients and wanted to tell you about one that we worked with in the past and recent months, Maurice Frumkin.

By Euletha Dukes

Maurice Frumkin The hallways in most New York City middle schools present a familiar scene. Students hustle from class to class, abuzz with the day’s gossip, while the sound of lockers slamming shut can be heard just before the bell rings and makes it clear who’s on time and who’s late — that’s Anyschool, USA. But there is something else that makes the students in this scene quite unique.

Every year, some 90,000 middle school students in New York City enter one of the most competitive school choice programs in the country — admission to the high school of their choice. For a middle-schooler, this is big. Success in this competition is even bigger than being voted Most Popular or asking that special someone out for a date. It’s life-changing big. And parents are well aware of that, which is why they do everything they can to help their kids get into the best schools.

Students can turn to any number of valuable resources — teachers, coaches, guidance counselors and advisors. These are all great team players, but there is only so much advice and guidance they can give. What students really need is a specialist, a coach who sees the bigger picture and can come up with a game plan to get them that personalized win of acceptance into the right high school.

Thousands of parents and students have enlisted the aid of NYC Admissions Solutions to help them achieve that victory. Maurice Frumkin, founder and president of NYC Admissions Solutions, credits his professional expertise to working in the New York City public school system for over 20 years, five of which were spent as the Deputy Executive Director of High School Enrollment in the Department of Education. “I’ve worked in the system, and no one else can offer this kind of personalized expertise. I help families so they don’t have to deal with miscellaneous logistics they shouldn’t have to deal with. It saves them time, gives them peace of mind, and gets them a better outcome.” Thousands of successful applicants can attest to that.

Mr. Frumkin advises that the sooner parents and children start with the high school admissions process, the better. Starting as early as the sixth grade gives them adequate time to navigate the system. What kind of obstacle course are they dealing with? One strewn with application deadlines, interviews, auditions and portfolio submissions, not to mention the stress of learning about the different admissions criteria used by the New York City schools they’ve set their sights on. Without a patient, personable guide, the whole affair can quickly become overwhelming, particularly if parents and students are ill-equipped to handle the complexities that inevitably arise.

The best results often go to parents and students who are engaged in the process from beginning to end, who are proactive and forward-looking. Mr. Frumkin consults with the student and the parents together, the better to tailor school recommendations to their needs and goals. He might even suggest great schools that his clients have never heard of.

Now think again about those hallways, this time in a high school. Come September, they are again abuzz with students, many of whom are making new friends at a new school. In many cases, it looks like it did, indeed, turn out to be the best choice after all. Was it worth the time, effort and sacrifice? Absolutely. For both parent and student, it’s that rare, golden, win-win situation.

New York, NY — December 30, 2013 Thanks to an introduction by Ross Karp this fall we met Ms. Spilman. We have had the pleasure to have her on our list of contacts and coffee date adventures in Manhattan. She hired us to work with her to recreate her brand: logo, tagline and corp-id set-up. We were thrilled. And before we present the visuals (since they are currently at the printer and waiting for their public entrance), here is a bit about Ms. Spilman. Enjoy!

By Euletha Dukes

At some point in our online activities, we have all come across those long legal documents whose terms we must agree to before we can gain access to some websites or are granted permission on some sites to be content creators. This usually comes after we have filled in our particulars — usually our names, addresses, birthdays, phone numbers, a few personal factoids, and (sometimes) our banking information. Most of us just give these “Terms and Conditions” documents our OK without a second thought.

Yet for online consumers and creators alike, a firestorm of questions may come to mind: What, exactly, are we agreeing to when we click on “I agree”? Who else can access our personal information? Can someone else lay claim to our creative content? Or, if we happen to be website creators, what legal rights do we have to use personal information and content from our subscribers?

Very few of us even bother to read these documents, and very few of those who do read them fully understand them. They often concern the specifics of Intellectual Property Law. Most of us know next to nothing about the nuts and bolts of this field of law, which is increasingly important in the rapidly expanding world of digital media. Enter Maia T. Spilman, Esq. 

A transactional intellectual property attorney for upwards of 15 years, Maia T. Spilman is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP). Her firm specializes in the law and regulation of the digital world, and provides counsel to clients who want to protect the intellectual property they license or create. With a background in music law and licensing going back to 1998, the year 2004 saw her shift her practice toward the digital space ultimately leading to a field rapidly gaining in significance and increasing in scope — that of Information Privacy.

Perhaps this was a natural progression. Companies such as Napster and iTunes were busy making headlines during those years when the old definitions of creative content and ownership were confronting all the challenges brought on by the increasing influence of digital technology. Ms. Spilman’s passion to educate and her keen interest in the complex arena of Intellectual Property led to the field of Privacy Law becoming her main focus.

Today she advises clients that range from start-ups and entrepreneurs to large corporations. Her areas of expertise include data collection and sharing practices, creating or revising company privacy policies, complying with copyright laws, and negotiating contracts. She runs the firm independently and, being the savvy networker that she is, she also collaborates with or refers clients to other colleagues who may have more expertise in related areas of the law.

One need not be a computer scientist to learn one’s rights in the digital world. To Big Business, where information means power, our personal data becomes a commodity. If left unchecked in the interwebs, that corporate power leaves us consumers with very little control over our own information.

But consumers aren’t the only ones who need training in digital law. Businesses and corporations do, too. Educating consumers, corporations and content creators alike — Ms. Spilman sincerely believes that this is her raison d’être.

My mother raised me with the familiar maxim, ‘To be forewarned is to be forearmed.” The more we depend on technology, the more we need to be informed of our rights as consumers and the options at our disposal if things suddenly go awry.

Maia T. Spilman, Esq., is on to a good thing. So are her clients. She frequently plays the diverse roles of educator, counselor and guide, as she helps individuals navigate the complex world of Information Privacy Law with an honest, clear vision. Such wise counsel as she can provide is invaluable for any businessperson exploring the vast and ever-expanding universe of the Internet.

For more information, go to www.maianyc.com or write to law@maianyc.com to reach Maia T. Spilman directly.

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