University of Rochester

EVENT: Rochester Film Premiere of The Key of G Explores the Relationship Between a Young Man with Severe Disabilities and His Artist and Musician Caregivers

TIME, DATE, AND PLACE: 7 p.m. Monday, May 11, Dryden Theatre at George Eastman House, 900 East Ave.

ADMISSION: Free and open to the public

April 8, 2009

The Institute for Innovation Transition, a collaboration of the Golisano Foundation and the University of Rochester, will showcase The Key of G, an award-winning documentary about a disabled man's transition into adulthood, at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 11, at the Dryden Theatre at George Eastman House.

The Key of G is an intimate documentary about disability, caregiving, and interdependence. Director Robert Arnold tells the story of Gannet Hosa-Betonte (or "G," as his friends call him), a 22-year-old man with physical and developmental disabilities, as he moves out of his mother's home for the first time to share a new home with three artists and musicians who support him, not only as primary caregivers, but also as friends. Together, they create a uniquely successful model of supported living and a compelling alternative to institutionalized care. The Rochester movie premiere of The Key of G will be followed by a discussion with Gannet and his mother, as well as film Director Robert Arnold.

Born with Mowat-Wilson syndrome, Gannet has difficulty integrating what he hears, sees and feels because the two halves of his brain do not communicate well. However, he is able to express "yes" and "no" by touch, and can reveal his wants and needs by pointing at icons in a specially made book. Arnold films Gannet over a three-year period in San Francisco, detailing the assistance he needs in order to do routine things that most people take for granted, such as taking a shower, getting dressed, and walking down the street.

Winner of the 2007 Golden Gate Award for Best Bay Area Documentary at the 50th San Francisco International Film Festival, The Key of G provides a model of how someone with serious disabilities can be integrated into the community and live a full life. Along the way, it challenges conventional notions about independence, empathy, and disability, and provides a glimpse into a kind of life seldom seen on television.

The Rochester film premiere of The Key of G is part of a disability film series, one of the first initiatives launched out of the Institute for Innovative Transition. The Institute, which was created last year with funding from the B. Thomas Golisano Foundation, aims to improve the quality of life for young adults with developmental disabilities and their families as they transition from school age to adulthood.

The event is sponsored by the Golisano Foundation and the University of Rochester, including the Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities, the Warner School of Education, the Rochester Disabilities Cluster, and the Office of University Disability Resources. Additional support provided by The Advocacy Center, the Midwestern Regional Transition Coordination Site, and the Regional Special Education Training and Resource Center (SETRC).

The event is free and open to the public. The film is open captioned, and a sign language interpreter will be provided for the discussion. For more information about the event, please call (585) 276-3657 or e-mail To learn more about The Key of G, please visit

About the Golisano Foundation
The Golisano Foundation awards grants to organizations helping individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. Since its inception in 1985, the Foundation has supported programs and initiatives on behalf of an underserved, largely unrecognized segment of the population. In serving as a proactive partner with service providers, organizations, and the community, the Foundation has enabled those with disabilities to more fully participate in the life of the community and created an environment of dignity and care for these individuals and their families.