Natali Tesche-Ricciardi

International undersea filmmaker to speak at Carnegie

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Natali Tesche-Riccardi scuba diving as child. 


The Newnan Carnegie Foundation is bringing filmmaker, author and on-camera talent Natali Tesche-Ricciardi for a visit to the Newnan Carnegie Library on Friday, July 11.

Tesche-Ricciardi, whose documentaries have aired on Discovery Channel, National Geographic and Animal Planet, will share some of her favorite film clips, highlighting beautiful deep sea dives, exotic marine life and one of her favorite ocean animals: the octopus.

Her film “Octopus Volcano,” which continues to air on Nat Geo Wild, documents her journey with a team of scientists into the lava-strewn waters near Stomboli. There, next to one of the world's most active volcanos, they discover the secrets of how one amazing creature, the common octopus, continues to thrive in a most explosive and hostile environment. The one-hour documentary can also be viewed on YouTube.

Tesche-Ricciardi's program for the Carnegie, titled "Adventures Under the Sea," will begin at 10 a.m. and is appropriate for ages 8 and up. Clips from her films “Seahorses: Wanted Dead or Alive,” “Ninja Shrimp” and “Search for the Giant Pacific Octopus” will be shown and a question-and-answer period will follow.

"I am excited to come to Newnan and speak with the Carnegie about my work,” says Tesche-Ricciardi, who now divides her time between Germany and Marietta, Georgia. “It is a wonderful opportunity to watch the children react to the films and have them ask questions that sometimes no adult would ever think of asking. I have a strong belief that we need to show our children how incredible our world is and that it is worth saving for future generations."

Elements in Tesche-Ricciardi's program coincide with Georgia Performance Earth and Ecology science standards for grades three through eight and adults will find the footage presented equally engaging.

Tesche-Ricciardi was born in Cologne, Germany into an filmmaking family. Her father, Sigurd Tesche, founder of Tesche Documentary Film Production, is considered to be one of Europe's most renowned documentary makers, directing more than 700 in his long career. Natali began scuba diving at a very young age and by the time she was 14, she was assisting her father in underwater productions.

After graduating high school in Germany she came to the U.S. to attend The Lee Strasburg Theatrical Institute in NYC, where she received a degree in acting and directing. Later, she received a BA in Broadcast Journalism from Georgia State University. And for a time, Natali called Coweta County home when her husband worked in the marine division of Yamaha Motor Corporation's manufacturing facility in Newnan. “I am looking forward to coming back to my former home town,” Natali says. “I don't get to visit nearly enough.”

Fans of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim programming block may be interested to know that while living in Newnan Natali served as the production manager for animated shows such as “AquaTeen Hunger Force,” “The Brak Show” and “SpaceGhost Coast to Coast.”

In 2003, Natali teamed up with Tesche Films again, this time spending most of the time diving, working on-camera, producing, filming, script writing and hosting all of the international versions of their films. She and her father have filmed in almost all oceans of the world, and in many of its lakes and rivers.

Currently, Natali has two films in production. One reveals the surprisingly teeming life that exists in the Alpine lakes of Europe. The other takes an in-depth look into the family life of the hippopotamus.

Soon after her Carnegie visit, she will head to Africa to start filming the latter in Kenya. The film will air on NatGeo Wild when complete.

Tickets for the July 11 program are free, but seating is limited. Library officials ask that those wishing to attend should call one week in advance, beginning July 3, to reserve seats: 770-683-1347. (Please note the library is closed July 4.)



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