Director Biography – Haddon Kime (LAG: A ZOOMSICAL COMEDY)

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Haddon is both a performing songwriter and composer. He currently lives in Atlanta with his wife and daughter. He is making his directorial debut with “Lag: A Zoomsical Comedy.”

From the Mauretanien rhythms and instrumentation of the award-winning short film “Trail of Hope”, to the Celtic Rock Pop and Soul based songs of “The Snow Queen: A New Musical”, the latter of which won him praise from The New York Times as a “Fairy Tale that Rocks” when it premiered Off-Broadway in 2014, Haddon is driven to write music and lyrics that connect with listeners and help to tell a great story. These stories he hopes draw us all out of the far flung reaches of our loneliness into the greater connection that comes in wandering and wondering for a time together.

Director Statement

In March 2020 our lives began to lag. We lost our live audience. More than ever before, we Zoomed, encountering friends and colleagues from a safe social distance. “Lag: A Zoomsical Comedy” evokes a society exposed and unsure of what will happen next. Fussy babies, murder hornets, and “distant inner landscapes” collide to capture the resilience and humor of our moment. While poor internet connections, inferior mics and faulty webcams might be a reminder of our “new normal”, in “Lag,” Minka uplifts how, more than ever, we must unite around the healing power and inalienable right of our ability to breathe.

This project was commissioned by Artistic Director Ariel Fristoe at Out of Hand Theater Company in Atlanta, Georgia at the end of March 2020.

As the theatre company pivoted away from the rest of their planned season on stage and towards innovative new ways of expression, the challenge arose; how can we create new and relevant content while adhering to new social distancing restrictions.

“Because of COVID-19 and social distancing restrictions a lot of theatre companies are producing plays over Zoom, but very few are seizing the opportunity to rethink the setting of these shows, and Zoom ends up to both artist and audience as an undesirable alternative to staging it live” says writer/composer/director Haddon Kime. “We decided to create an original musical comedy that is entirely conceived and produced using this video conferencing software intentionally as its own dramatic setting. Zoom becomes much more effective as a storytelling tool when you approach it this way.”

This musical short film was written for and features four of the most talented and well loved performers in Atlanta theatre, Minka Wiltz, Rhyn Saver, Trevor Rayshay Perry, and Googie Uterhardt.

Early on the decision was made to treat the quirks of video conferencing (latencies, the vast quality difference in microphones, unreliable internet connections) as features instead of bugs. Thus, after the performances were captured very little post processing was done to either the video or the audio, in order to reflect the unstable environment these class members find themselves in.

“We were reminded many times throughout the process of creating this film that great opportunities arise from great challenges.” says Kime. “COVID-19, and social distancing is no exception. We hope you enjoy our zoomsical comedy!”

Short Film: LAG: A ZOOMSICAL COMEDY, 10min, USA, Musical

 

49b7c6c92f posterDuring the COVID-19 Crisis, a class on meditation and self-care has made the move to Zoom. Four students and an instructor bravely attempt to attain inner peace in this new online classroom beset with all the distractions and frustrations of our new normal. Will they overcome glitchy technology, and the deep fear of losing everything, or will they implode in the process?

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Short Film: THE REST OF MY DAYS, 4min., Animation/Experimental

6cd1243370 posterAn intoxicating music and a sequence shot to dance to, unplug and get away from it all ! Plunge yourself in full immersion into this timeless universe, let yourself be carried away by the electro-hypnotic dance steps of this captivating character and this bewitching heady sound.

 

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Director Biography – Dimegaz (ROCK COUNTRY)

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Janire Etxabe since an early age has been climbing “dressed in white” mountains, almost always her rope as a her companion. Her passions being rocks and rope, she spends most of her time climbing and dancind with her rope. Although for years she has received classes in flamenco and stylized dance, since 2017 she has been totally immersed in vertical dance, thus fusing her passions in different performances. She has a degree in Fine Arts, a Diploma in early childhood education and therapeutic Pedagogy. She can’t stop creating and always has some artistic project in her hands; looking for new “air lines” up there in the mountains

Short Film: ROCK COUNTRY, 7min., Spain, Dance

 

441ee8dca7 posterThe aesthetics and spectacular nature of vertical dance, set in a quarry, a place destroyed by humankind. The beauty of dance substitutes the crudeness of the rock. Attention is focused upon the figure of a woman, demanding a leading role –as is happening in today’s society–. Women that dance, women that climb, women that even lift rocks, as if they were heaving high a country. Harria is the rock, Herria the country.

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Short Film: MENTAL, 4min., USA, Music

6a2a69cd53 posterI couldn’t help but notice how much this lockdown affects life in iconic places of LA which we will never see like this anytime soon.

This short film is about incredible views of deserted landmarks such as Hollywood Blvd, Venice , DTLA … and many more.

More than shots there’s also a creative story and twist in this video, hoping to spread some smiles in these challenging times.

Cheers and stay healthy.

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Director Biography – Xueyan Wang (GAKU)

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Xueyan Wang is a 2D and stop motion animator based in Brooklyn, NY. They work with analogue materials, primarily dry media (charcoal, pen, conte) and clay. They received their MFA degree in animation from Pratt Institute in 2020 with partial scholarship. Blending their fine art background in drawing into animated filmmaking, Xueyan creates music-driven impressionistic films with an emphasis on portraying personal emotions.

Director Statement

Artist Statement
I draw. I draw the changing landscape of my personal psyche. I am attached with my own self, obsessed of my emotions, feelings, experiences. I focus on watching my progress in life, where I came from, where I am, and where I am going. I am easily overwhelmed; making work is a good place to process my many sensations at my own pace. For me, making works is similar to art therapy, my drawings reach the subconscious symbolisms that embody my emotional experiences. The action of drawing accesses my formless feelings, fears and longings, through drawing I observe what I have been and what I am becoming.

I also make animated films inspired by my drawings. There’s something unique about rhythm, temporality, and music, the combination of which is capable of immediately accessing my deepest source of emotions buried unearthed. This is why my films are almost always inspired by and also scored to a piece of predetermined music. Animated filmmaking is a heuristic process for me, that leads me to unresolved personal experiences that is crying to be given a form. By being in close contact with my own self, I feel safe and content.

Short Film: DIVIDED WE SCROLL, 5min., UK, Dance/Experimental

Technology is rewiring our brains and changing both our physical movements and inner thought processing.
‘Divided We Scroll’ is an experimental and eerie depiction of our intimate relationships with these technologies, which have become obsessive, compulsive and divisive.
Through contemporary dance, we explore the chilling reality of a constantly connected world where data and software is continuing to redefine us within an increasingly complex technological network.

News & Reviews

Director Biography – Andreas John (FORGET ME NOT)

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I am a contemplative artist, inviting the work in my hands to move through me. I co-create with landscape, environment, the elements, and all aspects of nature as a sculptor, photographer and film maker.

Director Statement

Forget Me Not was filmed solo, improvised, in one location over the course of 2 consecutive evenings. There was no script or prior planning. The film was a collaborative work involving myself, Hazel Turrone, Jan Sandman and the movement artists featured in the piece.

It is such a deep privilege to be able to express myself through film during this time of social isolation when so many other artists are struggling with not being able to share their work. I am grateful for this medium and its capacity to connect people with beauty, story, and each other in such a challenging time.