Documentary editing involves an intricate blend of rhythm and choreography, logical narrative flow, and visual jigsaw puzzling. My goal as a non-fiction storyteller is to take viewers on a journey that engages their curiosity and challenges their intellect. To do that, I distill raw footage into authentic stories of colorful personalities, unfamiliar worlds, and perplexing issues.
Check out my work below!
For the Left Hand
At age 10, aspiring pianist Norman Malone is paralyzed on his right side after being attacked by his father. Over the next several decades he masters the left-hand repertoire in secret, before a chance discovery of his talent leads him towards making his concert debut. Aged 78, he will perform the greatest work in the canon: Ravel’s Piano Concerto for the Left Hand.
Look Away, Look Away
Look Away, Look Away explores the national reckoning around the meaning of the Confederate flag. Battle lines are drawn in Mississippi to determine the fate of the last state flag to include the most powerful, and divisive, symbol of our fractured history. Following an array of activists from both sides, this film captures the fierce five-year battle over the Mississippi state flag, revealing how race, heritage and long-simmering grievances over the Civil War shapes our sense of who we are as Americans.
Throughout the 1970s, brothers Jerry and Jeff Kellogg of Muskegon, Michigan were a force to be reckoned with in the sport of marathon canoe racing. Growing up along the north branch of the Au Sable River as second generation paddlers, the brothers won their first local race as teenagers and never looked back. The brothers took home consecutive wins in the 120 mile Au Sable Canoe Marathon; all while battling 15 hours of steady paddling through the night. Their contribution to the sport of canoe racing set new standards for racers to come with over a decade worth of top 5 finishes.
Little Cabin Films
It Is No Secret
Known as the “pastor of pastors”, Dr. Reverend Clay Evans was a leader in the Civil Rights movement, an award-winning Gospel Music artist, a trailblazer in broadcast ministry, and a mentor to many other ministers. This 26-minute tribute video interweaves existing oral history interviews, archival photos, television broadcasts, and Gospel choir performances into a celebration of this legendary spiritual leader. Related artifacts, photos, and oral history interviews are now all housed at the Chicago Public Library’s Rev Clay Evans Archive, where they will be accessible to the general public for decades to come.
‘63 Boycott chronicles the Chicago Public School Boycott of 1963. More than 200,000 Chicagoans, mostly students, marched to protest the segregationist policies of CPS Superintendent Benjamin Willis, who placed mobile school units on playgrounds and parking lots as a “permanent solution” to overcrowding in black schools. The project will offer a modern perspective on the impact and legacy of this forgotten history 50 years later as it reconnects the participants to each other and the event itself.
Beyond Blind: A Guide for the Sighted
Beyond Blind: A Guide for the Sighted is an online instructional tool that helps sighted students to gain a more nuanced understanding of people with visual disabilities. Visitors to the site will explore several interactive multimedia challenges that address common misconceptions and stereotypes about blindness. By providing a safe and informative environment for students to get answers to their basic questions surrounding blindness, Beyond Blind will open up a pathway to positive future interactions between the sighted and the blind.
Producer / Editor
All Senses Go
Starting at a remote Alaska Native language immersion camp, Keep Talking follows a few remarkable teachers and students over the course of a year. Kodiak Alutiiq is a severely endangered language. Less than 50 fluent native speakers remain, mostly Elders, yet these young learner/teachers fight the odds despite a dwindling number of speakers, resources and time.
There Are Jews Here
There Are Jews Here takes viewers into the unknown world of small Jewish communities living on the verge of extinction. Over 1 million of America’s Jews are in small towns that once thrived but have seen their populations dwindle as children leave for greener pastures in bigger cities. Exploring the themes of faith and community in the 21st century, the film visits small towns in Montana, Alabama, Texas and Pennsylvania, where you are sure to ask “there are Jews there?”
Twenty years after their deaths, filmmaker Dinesh Sabu sets out to learn the truth about his parents’ lives. Retracing the story of his parents’ immigration from India, Dinesh uncovers his mother’s schizophrenia, a mental illness that perhaps ultimately led to her suicide. Rather than retelling a linear history of his parents’ lives, the film paints an impressionistic portrait of them and Dinesh’s journey of discovery. Through memories, personal interviews, and vérité scenes, Unbroken Glass shows one family confronting its history of mental illness and loss.
Penelope: The Documentary
What happens when a nursing home decides to throw out the bingo boards and take on the Odyssey instead? Penelope: The Documentary tells the story of how residents, some with severe dementia, collaborate with playwright Anne Basting and Sojourn Theater to create “Finding Penelope”, a play reinterpreting Homer’s Odyssey to tell it from Penelope’s point of view. The film is a beautiful exploration of how the residents, actors and students collaborated, from reading the Odyssey together to learning Greek and eventually putting on a professional play featuring scenes all over the nursing home and an audience of hundreds.
Saving Mes Aynak
Saving Mes Aynak follows Afghan archaeologist Qadir Temori as he races against time to save a 5,000-year-old archaeological site in Afghanistan from imminent demolition. A Chinese state-owned mining company is closing in on the ancient site, eager to harvest $100 billion dollars worth of copper buried directly beneath the archaeological ruins. Only 10% of Mes Aynak has been excavated, though, and some believe future discoveries at the site have the potential to redefine the history of Afghanistan and the history of Buddhism itself. Qadir Temori and his fellow Afghan archaeologists face what seems an impossible battle against the Chinese, the Taliban and local politics to save their cultural heritage from likely erasure.
@home is a feature-length documentary film following the work of e-activist Mark Horvath. Mark has experienced the highs and lows of the American dream, from a successful career in television to barely surviving, homeless and addicted, on Hollywood Boulevard. But he found his voice again when he hit the streets, armed with a digital camera and a smartphone, to talk to homeless people about their own experiences. Today, he’s the online voice of his cause, and he’s bringing their stories to millions on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. The @home documentary follows him on a road trip across the country, from Los Angeles to Arkansas to Pittsburgh, as he makes homelessness in America visible.
In Kartemquin’s American Arab, Iraqi-born Director Usama Alshaibi takes a provocative look at the contradictions of Arab identity in post 9/11 America, weaving his own life’s journey and “coming-of-Arab” experience into the life stories of several diverse characters. Exploring the values, passions, and hopes of his fellow Arab-Americans, Usama tries to make peace with his conflicted chosen homeland.
The Trials of Muhammad Ali
No conventional sports documentary, The Trials of Muhammad Ali investigates its extraordinary and often complex subject’s life outside the boxing ring. From joining the controversial Nation of Islam and changing his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali, to his refusal to serve in the Vietnam War in the name of protesting racial inequality, to his global humanitarian work, Muhammad Ali remains an inspiring and controversial figure. Outspoken and passionate in his beliefs, Ali found himself in the center of America’s controversies over race, religion, and war. The film examines how one of the most celebrated sports champions of the 20th century risked his fame and fortune to follow his faith and conscience.
Giorgio has created paintings on Venice’s Piazza San Marco for 35 years. Crowd-pleaser, showman and “bait,” he makes a living selling these memories of Venice to throngs of tourists. Then he goes home to create his real artwork.
What’s Your Calling?
Through a collection of interviews, videos and articles, What’s Your Calling? pushes the notion of “calling” to explore all of the stuff that makes us human: our values, our passions, our doubts and hopes. Profiling individuals from diverse backgrounds – professional snowboarders, jazz musicians, tug boat captains, academics, improvisers, Muay Thai fighters, religious leaders, social workers, environmental activists, toy inventors – What’s Your Calling? shares what people have been called to do with their lives and how they hope to change the world.
KTQ 45 Supercut
This montage was edited for the 45th anniversary celebration of Kartemquin Films, a Chicago-based documentary production company. The supercut was screened at The Metro in 2011, and features moments from their library of over 40 films, which continues to grow today.
Through brief portraits of three women—a blind theater goer, a tactile tour guide, and an audio describer—Hearing Images illustrates how the performing arts can be made verbal and tactile for those in an audience who cannot see.
Producer / Editor
Beyond Blind Interactive
The Voice Box
This short documentary features Ellen Frohardt, who had her vocal chords removed as a result of cancer and who gives candid insight into what it was like to lose the voice that she identified as her own.
Sally is Sarah Productions
No longer available
Lincoln Transformed was an ambitious, cross-platform temporary exhibition at the Chicago History Museum. The physical gallery included artifacts from the museum’s vast collection of Lincoln memorabilia, as well as a wide screen gallery video called “The Fiery Trial,” an immersive audio tour, and several hands-on interactive experiences. The companion website, built in collaboration with the Newberry Library, is called Lincoln at 200.
Chicago History Museum