Monterey Pop Film at tthe Golden State Theatre

  Happy that this film will be viewed at the Golden State Theatre plus comments by photographer Tom O'Neal and more.

May 1, 2017

  Contact:  Karen Nordstrand, 831-646-0910

  [email protected]

“Monterey Pop”:  Step back in time to 1967’s “Summer of Love”

The Monterey International Pop Festival in 1967 marked a special time in cultural history.  And filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker’s documentary, “Monterey Pop,” is regarded a ground-breaking film, blending music and film, capturing the visions of the era and the Monterey County Fairgrounds event held 50 years ago.  Pennebaker has been hailed as the visionary of modern music videos.

On May 12 you can step back in time to the Monterey International Pop Festival.  The Monterey County Film Commission will screen Pennebaker’s film at this “groovy” evening at the Golden State Theatre, 417 Alvarado St. in Monterey.  Doors open at 6:15 p.m., and refreshments will be available for purchase in the lobby. The program begins at 7:15 p.m. and includes a short talk by Carmel’s professional photographer Tom Gundelfinger O’Neal, whose rock and roll photos from the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival launched his career.

At 8 p.m. “Monterey Pop” will be shown.  Musical icons of the 60s who appeared at the landmark festival at the Monterey County Fairgrounds will be seen again….on the big screen: Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, John Phillips and Mama Cass Elliot of the Mamas and the Papas, Pete Townshend of The Who, Johnny Rivers, Stephen Stills of Buffalo Springfield, Simon and Garfunkel, Otis Redding, Grace Slick of Jefferson Airplane, Ravi Shankar and Paul Butterfield and more.

Information tables with information on the film commission-- which is celebrating its 30th anniversary-- will be set up in the lobby.  The glossy, 132-page magazine “Celebrating 50 Years of Monterey Pop” produced by the Monterey Herald will be available for sale with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the film commission.  It’s tagged as “A photographic journey of the music festival that launched the 1967 Summer of Love.”  Photos are from Monterey Herald archives, Tom Gundelfinger O’Neal and Fred Arellano.

“The Hippie Dictionary” by John McCleary will be available for purchase, as well as postcards with Monterey Pop musicians photographed by Arellano.  And, a benefit raffle will be set up for a Monterey County Film Commission “Summer of Love” gift basket.

“Wear flowers in your hair, grab your beads, come in 60s style, and join the fun while reminiscing with many who attended the original festival,” said Karen Seppa Nordstrand, Monterey County’s film commissioner. “It’s an educational opportunity, too, with insights on the photographers at the original festival and behind-the-scenes stories.”  (On June 16—18, the 50th Anniversary Monterey International Pop Festival will be held at the same dates and venue as in 1967).

Proceeds of the $16 tickets will benefit two nonprofits—the Monterey County Film Commission and the Monterey International Pop Festival Foundation, along with the Golden State Theatre.  Go to for tickets. Special student tickets for $5 can be obtained by advance arrangement at 831-646-0910.

Event sponsors and partners include the Golden State Theatre, the Arts Council of Monterey, Monterey Herald, Monterey County Convention & Visitors Bureau, TGO Photography, the County of Monterey, and Lou Adler.

For more information contact the film commission at 831-646-0910 or [email protected].


The Monterey International Pop Festival Foundation is a nonprofit charitable and educational foundation empowering music-related personal development, creativity, and mental and physical health.  In the spirit of the Monterey International Pop Festival which took place in 1967, and on behalf of the artists who took part, the Foundation awards grants to qualified organizations and individuals with identifiable needs in those areas.

The Monterey County Film Commission is a nonprofit celebrating its 30th anniversary year.  It was created by and funded in part by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors in 1987, and works to inspire and facilitate film and media production throughout Monterey County, creating positive economic impact.

More than $100 million has come into local communities from on-location film production since it was established.  In 2016 the HBO TV limited series, “Big Little Lies” filmed in the Monterey Peninsula and contributed nearly $2.5 million to the local economy.

Tom Gundelfinger O’Neal’s extensive career as a photographer began after attending Chicago Art Institute and University of Illinois.  He developed a passion for the camera and the mobility of film capture. Along with his burgeoning talent as a photographer, O’Neal also had an instinct for timing. His photography career was launched at the iconic Monterey International Pop Festival. From there he immersed himself in the intense Los Angeles music scene that exploded in the 1960s. He found himself in great demand by several high profile rock and roll stars, and he applied both his photographic and graphic design skills in the creation of more than 72 album covers, including the acclaimed Déjà Vu cover used by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.  Other notable groups he photographed were the Rolling Stones, Steppenwolf, Joni Mitchell, Poco, Crazy Horse, the Mamas and the Papas, B.B. King, and The Three Tenors. He developed relationships with entertainers that created opportunities for many years to follow. Two of O’Neal’s shots are part of the permanent collection of the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.  In the 1970s he shifted his focus to photojournalism and worked in Africa for the Peace Corps, and then in Paris and London photographing the European art scene.  Ready to have a more permanent location he returned to the Monterey Peninsula. He is active in commercial photography with such clients as Rolex, The Council in Washington D.C., and Pebble Beach Company.  His TGO studio and office is located in Carmel.




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