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Recreating a Moment

As previously mentioned, HBO’s Treme is recreating the 2007 March for Survival. I’m trying to “drum up” some support for recreating the Mid-City contingent. In particular I’m hoping someone with a snare drum turns out. As you can see in the photo below, the Mid-City contingent included a snare drum in honor of Dinerral Shavers.

Marching Down Canal Street

I wish I knew who the guy with the drum was. I remember Ashley had a snare too…

Note also people were wearing white. I hope we can recreate little historical details like that.

OK, herewith is the official call from Jeniffer Farwell, president of the Mid-City Neighborhood Organization.

Honor Dinerral Shavers, Helen Hill, and all the other loved ones lost to violence this Saturday (Feb. 5) as an extra for the show, Treme.

This march will be filmed for the show, but it also gives you a chance to express continued outrage with violence problems that persist in our beautiful city and the failures in education, recreation, and other programs that perpetuate a culture of violence among the youth of the city.

Furthermore, it gives Mid-City and its surroundings national coverage, especially when we carry our Mid-City yard signs and/or wear Mid-City t-shirts.

Wednesday morning I will have the details on where and when to meet (early Saturday morning; somewhere in Mid-City).

If you want to participate, please email as soon as possible, and send this to all your friends. Treme MUST have everyone’s names and contact info before the event – preferably by Thursday.

If we get 50 or more people, Treme will make a $500 donation that will be used for a neighborhood get-together later this year.

I plan on being there.

I guess this would be a good place to recount my Treme experience thus far. I was a little disappointed that I didn’t actually get to speak to the writers after all. It seems that by the time I got into the loop, things were already pretty far along. That’s too bad, because I flatter myself to think I might have had some insights that could have informed the creative process — but oh well. I did get to speak to Karen-kaia Livers who’s doing specialty casting and helping assemble extras for the recreation. Maybe she passed some of my pearls of wisdom on to others. As for what’s in the works, I really don’t know much, except that I understand Dinerral Shaver’s sister Nikita will be the only speaker depicted at the rally. I don’t know if she’ll play herself or if it will be some other actress or if maybe they’ll use archival footage. Also, I understand the overarching aim will be to portray a moment of unity, which I applaud.

Perhaps you’ve been inspired by seeing the people of Egypt unite in mass protests this past week. The 2007 March for Survival is the closest thing to that I’ve seen here in New Orleans, or anywhere in the United States. Though it was born of pain and outrage, in some ways it represents our city at its best. Here’s your chance to reenact it.

Published inNeighborsNew OrleansRadio & TV


  1. Michael Homan Michael Homan

    I can’t get past thinking that marching in Egypt is real, and the original march back in 2005 (which I participated in) was real, but the HBO march seems fake. I like the show, but can’t stomach making an appearance for some weird reason.

  2. Michael: Totally understandable. I think it means that you’re not fully adjusted to the post-modern reality, which is creeping surrealism. I think HBO understands people crave authentic motivations, so they are trying to make it relevant by pitching it as (also) a statement about the current level of violence right now in 2011.

  3. Michael Homan Michael Homan

    Bart: I saw that. But the original march was community driven. This one is ratings driven. Sure the more Treme-the-show succeeds the more interest and tourism are generated potentially, and I totally encourage others to re-march, but me, I still feel like sitting this one out. Mind you, I did this before. I whored my house out for K-Ville, and I still think about the painted flood lines they painted, and the fridges with duct tape they stacked on the street. Even now I’m watching a documentary about Minyard the coroner during Katrina. Will it ever end? Sure, change the channel, but I can’t.

  4. […] Hot 8 Brass Band drummer Dinerral Shavers, and other musicians who were lost to violence, are marching as extras. document.write (''); ('’) Tagged with: dinerral […]

  5. Eddie Ecker Eddie Ecker

    That was me playing the snare drum for poor Dinerral. My name is Eddie Ecker and I lived on Iberville St. at the time of the march. I have since sold that house to my brothers and am currently living in St. Louis where my wife is from. That was a sad, yet hopeful day. We’ve come so far, but we’ve got so far to go.

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