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CNY Arts, Oswego Opera Theater, and WCNY’s ‘The Golden Cage’ Receives Telly Award

CNY Arts and Oswego Opera Theater, in partnership with WCNY, is proud to announce that “The Golden Cage” received a bronze award for Music, Dance & Performance in Television in the record breaking 45th Annual Telly Awards. The Telly Awards honors excellence in video and television across all screens and is judged by leaders from video platforms, television, streaming networks, and production companies.

“The Golden Cage” is a powerful and true story of Oswego’s Holocaust survivors during WWII. In 1944, 982 refugees from the Holocaust were brought to the Fort Ontario Emergency Refugee Shelter in Oswego, NY. They remained confined until 1946, when President Truman allowed them to apply to become American citizens. Charles Abeles, an Austrian musician, composed the music, and Miriam Sommerburg, a German author, wrote the text for this opera detailing their experiences in the refugee camp.

“Programs like ‘The Golden Cage’ build on WCNY’s educational services, allowing us to deepen our commitment to preserving history and fostering cultural awareness,” said Mitch Gelman, President and CEO of WCNY. “Our collaboration with CNY Arts and Oswego Opera Theater was instrumental in bringing this award-winning film to life, ensuring that the historical significance of these stories is shared within our community.”

“We’re honored to receive this award alongside our production partners,” said Stephen Butler, Executive Director of CNY Arts and Co-executive Producer of “The Golden Cage.” “This story is moving, timely, and a significant chapter in our local history. We’d especially like to thank Empire State Development for their generous funding that helped make this broadcast possible.”

Marilyn Smiley, Co-executive Producer of Oswego Opera, said, “Oswego Opera is delighted to have been chosen. We think ‘The Golden Cage’ was an incredible project, and it couldn’t have been done without the support of Empire State Development, CNY Arts, and WCNY. Thank you!”

To view the award, click here. The full list of the 45th Annual Telly Awards winners can be found at

Learn more about “The Golden Cage” at

For media inquiries or further information for a featured article, please reach out to Lauren Easton at or call 585-797-4314.

About WCNY

WCNY was founded in 1965 as The Educational Television Council of Central New York. Today, it is a public communications organization that produces content across multiple platforms, including television and radio programs, dynamic web and targeted email content, the WCNY CONNECT magazine, and social media. Through its media platforms, in-person and virtual events, WCNY brings local coverage and educational services to Central New Yorkers. WCNY operates four digital, pledge-free broadcast television channels and three radio stations. Classic FM is one of the few radio stations in the world dedicated to locally programmed classical music, and Community FM features local people and local perspectives on immigration, education, veterans, health, arts, science and culture. Learn more at


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