Courtesy Holdredge Collection, San Francisco Library History Center, San Francisco Public Library


Please Support 2 new projects by Susheel Bibbs. Paypal buttons and what you can do are below:

Project 1: Expand the award-winning Hyers' Documentary on PBS to an hour and help us distribute the current film:

The half-hour film now on PBS and on DVD entitled Voices for Freedom, The Hyers Sisters' Legacy has won 8 awards. Get the DVD on the Hyers Web site or see the trailer at

This film is co-sponsored by The Living Heritage Foundation, so donations to expand it are tax deductible. Use the link and the email - to donate

=Please make a Tax Deductible donation below
=For credit-card donations, use the link below the PayPal screen:

Note: If a screen has data, remove the sample email, and type yours in the PayPal box. For credit card donations, use the link below the PayPal link.

Use the email

To send a check
Make it payable to The Living Heritage Foundation, with a note on the check that says, "Hyers Film."
Address: Attn: Bibbs-LHF, 123 Mint Leaf Way, Sacramento, CA 95838

=Need to know more about the Hyers? Read on
Anna and Emma Hyers were two sisters from Sacramento who,in 1871, became the first African-American women to succeed before mainstream audiences as touring concert-opera artists. Later they contributed to human rights by creating the first "American" musicals. These opposed the denigrating imaging of their people by blackface minstrels. They were the first to employ black leading characters and natural casting in American Music Theater!! And, they did it all in the turbulent 1870's and 80's -- a time of terror for black people that encreased the horror of nightriders and rampant lynching.

Anna and Emma began as teens who studied opera in the San Francisco Bay area around the time of the 1860's civil rights movement across the land (yes, 1860's!). By 1873, they were nationally acclaimed touring opera stars, but by 1876, they had become singer-activists who protected the dignity of their people through their new, groundbreaking musicals, which were beloved by both black and white audiences. Here's why we need to celebrate them. <b>Anna and Emma Hyers were</b> --
= The first to form a successful comic opera troupe (called one of the best in the US)
= The first troupe to chronicle the black experience from slavery to freedom in no fewer than seven original musicals
= The first to sustain employment of black singers, actors, and dancers who did not wish to be defined by minstrelsy in the dark days of lynchings, oppression, and the KKK that followed Reconstruction.

=The first to hire and present black leading players before mainstream audiences under top management
=The first to integrate casting in US music theater!!
=The first to use "the spiritual" as a major element of the musical. The list goes on!

We all deserve to know them! The Hyers brought humanity and harmony as they gave voice to their people's dignity to offset the ridicule and impressions given by touring black-faced minstrels.

The impact of our work
Our new film has won 8 international awards including the coveted Telly Award. The film is touring with screenings. It inspires audience members to achieve their dreams and to carry forward the dreams of those who came before them. Our rights, though easily lost, can be preserved through the talents and courage of those who care, and each of us, even if not usually regarded as powerful, can make a positive difference in the quest for human dignity and civil rights.

Today many rights are being challenged and eroded as they were in the Hyers' day. So, their story will illumine challenges of both yesterday and today and inspire us all to climb higher -- to use our talents for social betterment.

Please help:
You will help us do more -- Raising this winning short doc to a one-hour FEATURE Documentary will bring forth even more inspiring informaton: We will call it "Voices for Freedom -- The Hyers Sisters Dream, Change, and Legacy" and get it to PBS in Fall 2020, just when the shorter one is going to expire.

What your gift will do?
We have only to edit what we have already taped The longer film will still feature super-star Denyce Graves, our celebrity host, narration, concert excerpts with renowned artists: Robert Sims, Tichina Vaughn, Hope Briggs, and more; great spoken word hip hop-world-music artist WolfHawkJaguar's insightful commentary accompanied by master drummer Pope Flyne, but it will have even more background and inspiration -- re-enactments and music of folk that inspired the Hyers, and more personal detail about the Sisters and their impact.Help us get there soon!

To mail a check: Use the Paypal form above or make out a check payable to The Living Heritage Foundation, with a note on the check or Paypal that says, "Hyers Film."
Address: Attn: Bibbs-LHF, 123 Mint Leaf Way, Sacramento, CA 95838

Other things you can do
Book Bibbs' program at

1) Book Susheel's exciting, new Hyers brief lecture and screening: The Hyers Sisters (Voices for Freedom) -- An Offering in Word and Song and then the film.
This 20 min lecture-performance, is like a mini documentary -- Bibbs gives background not yet int he film about the Hyers' story through word, song, visuals, and video and can include a guest artist live or on film. She answers questions about the Hyers Sisters and the film after the screening. Here's a sample Feb 2019 presentation:

2) Pass the word and recommend this site and film to your friends by posting Hyers site --
on FACEBOOK, Twitter, and on other social network.

3) Buy the DVD at


Have you seen Susheel's inspiring, award-winning film on PBS or purchased the DVD Meet Mary Pleasant (Mother of Civil Rights in California)on Give a student or others that inspiration!! Help distribute a winner -- this PBS DVD has already gone to millions and as a gift to family it is special. We want also to send it to HBC colleges, University Libraries, and many national libraries. Awardwinning PBS film, "Meet Mary Pleasant" (Mother of Civil Rights...) -- now extended on PBS to Fall 2020!! Any amount will help.

We need raise only $3000 more. Give generously, please, to help youth and others Meet Mary Pleasant.

Want to know more about Pleasant?
Paste in this url to a segment on Mary Pleasant's life by Susheel Bibbs on KVIE-TV, Sacramento PBS:

Donate online (tax deductible too).
Just use the Paypal link above, but place the letters MEP in the note line of the donation, or sent a check to the address above form