Founder, Building For Life, A Nonprofit Social Activism Group
Tim G. Zajaros Jr., Co-founder
Hugh Taylor, Creative Advisor
United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women
Department of Economic and Social Affairs
Fifty-second session of the Commission on the Status of Women 2008
Partner, Auroras Pictures International, Inc.
Film Producer /Director /Ethnographer
Movement Analyst / Theater Producer
Documentary Filmmaking Experience , Los Angeles
Winner of 2006 WIF/GM Alliance Acceleration Grant for Emerging Filmmakers: Women in Film GM
Producer/Director , Women in Focus Productions, Inc., 2002-Present
Produced and directed Thai Women: Challenging AIDS , a 10 minute, passionate short documentary film that interweaves personal stories of Northern Thai women with HIV/AIDS, who use their creative and spiritual strength to challenge the societal stigma of the disease.
Conducted research in Thailand by collaborating with the Planned Parenthood Association of Thailand and the patients they give counseling to. Interviewed women to explore their life stories. The Thai local film crew took photographs, and the American cinematographer shot with the JVC 500 camera against a background of lush scenery surrounding the hill tribes and villages. Some women, although shunned by society, felt good enough about themselves to allow the camera into their homes. There we could see the women cleaning, taking pride in keeping their teak houses impeccable. The women purify themselves in the physical world as a way to mirror the purification of their own bodies in the spiritual world.
Theatre Production Experience, New York
Director/Script Writer, Tribeca Performing Arts Center, 1990-1999
Captured the essence of Thai dance and music in order to introduce it to the American culture as an artistic director of the Vajiradhammapadip Temple performance troupe . Built pride and cultural solidarity within the Thai-American community in the Tri-State area. The students used their own creative autonomy to incorporate hip hop movements from the American pop culture into their own dance practice. They focused on styles, as well as the qualities of movement, from different regions of Thailand .
The New York Shakespeare Festival in Association with the Asia Society, 1995
Negotiated a cultural partnership and served as liaison between The Joseph Papp Theater Company, The Asia Society, The Cultural Affairs Department of Thailand , and the American-Thai community. Ticket sales for all performances were completely sold out.
Documentary Filmmaking Experience, Bangkok, Thailand, 1983-1986
Producer/Director, “The Art of Thai Puppetry”
A documentary examining the work of celebrated national puppeteer and her techniques of portraying a variety of female characters in Thai dance dramas. The performer, through female characters, used a variety of voices, gestures, and emotions to portray challenges and conflicts with men. Broadcast in Thailand and other universities in the U.S for educational purposes.
Director, “The Wrong Turn”
A 45-minute, short feature film examining the struggles of Thai teenage drug addicts. Focuses on teenagers experiencing family difficulties that lead to drug abuse and drug trafficking. Distributed nationwide to schools in Thailand as part of drug prevention programs.
Co-director, “Sex Trade”
A documentary on child prostitution whose goal is to identify the sex trade of child prostitution in Bangkok . This educational video has been shown throughout Thailand to young girls, who are vulnerable to prostitution and living in rural communities.
Dissertation: Authority and Autonomy: Extending the Boundaries of Women Through Thai Dance, Dissertation Advisor: Marcia B. Siegel, 2000
Fully engaged the ethnographic experience with a New York Thai community performance group, shaped by empowered, self-funded women. The model was built as a democratic organization, rather than the conventional hierarchical structure of the temple to which these women belonged. The process produced a dynamic and creative performance in the American public setting.
Ph. D. Department of Performance Studies, Tisch School of the Arts, New York University , May 2000
M.F.A. Institute of Film & Television, Tisch School of the Arts, New York University , May 1982
M.A. Department of Theatre Arts, Creative Arts Center , West Virginia University , May 1979
B.A. Department of Dramatic Arts, Chulalongkorn University , Bangkok , Thailand , May 1976
Related Professional Activities
The Julliard School of Music , New York , Guest Lecturer
Roy W. Dean Grant , Finalist