APH Press Release

Acclaimed Narrator to be Honored

Mitzi Friedlander, a Talking Book narrator at the American Printing House for the Blind (APH), is retiring. During her extraordinary career, which spans over a half century, she has recorded more books than any other Talking Book narrator in the nation.

The Talking Book program, administered by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped of the Library of Congress, provides recorded literature to 500,000 blind, visually impaired, and physically impaired Americans. http://www.loc.gov/nls/ The National Library Service (NLS) contracts with American Printing House for the Blind to prepare these “Talking Books.”

Her fans, locally and nationally, will celebrate her accomplishments at a retirement ceremony that will take place February 5, 2015 from 5:30-7:00 p.m. at APH. The program, which starts at 6:00 p.m., will feature awards and resolutions from local, state, and national groups along with audio and video greetings from her fans. Barbara Henning, Louisville violinist and singer, who is blind and enjoys the Talking Books that Mitzi narrates, will perform a piece in Mitzi’s honor.

A well-known figure in Louisville’s theatrical world, Mitzi earned the first Master’s Degree in Theater Arts given by the University of Louisville. She has performed with Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, the Louisville Ballet, the Kentucky Opera Association, and the Louisville Children’s Theatre. She has also taught Theatre Arts at the University of Louisville and at Indiana University Southeast. The versatile actress, who has recorded over 2,000 titles during her 50+ years at APH, has lent her voice to nonfiction pieces, works of fiction, scientific publications, and children’s literature.

Through her work as a narrator in the APH studio, Mitzi became the first recipient of the Didymus Award for narration of 1,000 Talking Books for the Library of Congress. She is familiar to over half a million people in the listening audience as the voice of such classics as Gone With the Wind, Charlotte’s Web and several of Sue Grafton’s “alphabet” series of detective novels. In 1993 this nationwide audience selected her as one of their favorite Talking Book voices, honoring her with the Alexander Scourby Award for excellence in the narration of nonfiction titles.

To hear a sample of Mitzi Friedlander’s work, visit www.aph.org//museum/programs/narrator-jukebox/mitzi-friedlander/ or download www.aph.org/files/museum/narrator-jukebox/Mitzi-Friedlander.mp3

About the American Printing House for the Blind

The American Printing House for the Blind, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is the world’s largest company devoted solely to researching, developing, and manufacturing products for people who are blind or visually impaired. Founded in 1858, it is the oldest organization of its kind in the United States. Under the 1879 federal Act to Promote the Education of the Blind, APH is the official supplier of educational materials for visually impaired students in the U.S. who are working at less than college level. APH manufactures textbooks and magazines in braille, large print, recorded, and digital formats. APH also creates hundreds of educational, recreational, and daily living products.

APH has recorded books for National Library Service’s (NLS) Talking Book program since 1936. APH has eleven recording studios and records over 800 titles per year for the program. Mitzi Friedlander is one of about 30 narrators who work there. www.aph.org/museum/programs/narrator-jukebox/

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