While the jazz world is pretty much a straight, male 'man's world', documenting the existence and emergence of female jazz instrumentalists in the field became another subject for my cameras. While exploring that aspect, and digging deeper into the culture of jazz, I found that it is quietly accepted that 'gay' or 'lesbian' composers and players in the genre are largely overlooked or go unrecognized entirely. It's mostly a 'Don't Ask - Don't Tell' culture, and one I feel needs to have a light shone upon it.
Here's a resource that talks about the subject & lists known 'out' jazz artists in the past: www.glbtq.com/arts/jazz,2.html
With only a handful of 'out' 'Queer' jazz artists, some good people in Philadelphia are hosting the first-ever 'Queer Jazz Festival' that will showcase a good population of these current musicians.
I'd like to travel there and capture as many interviews, presentations and concerts as possible, and in my unique 'guerilla' style. In order to accomplish this journey and production of content for this project, I need to come up with funds. Airfare, lodging, car rental, festival ticket, gear for my cameras, oh...and I have a nasty habit of eating! Figuring in loss of wages back home places me about $3,500 as my goal.
What do you get out of this adventure of mine? Reports from the front lines! I'll post photos from location via Twitter & Facebook and uploads of short clips within hours of shooting. You'll get to be near this historic event through my lense, and be part of something bigger than us all. Upon returning to California, I'll get working on production of a longer mini documentary of the event in Philadelphia. Probably a series of them :)
Here is a clip I created in May 2014 from covering a rally that took place in front of San Francisco's Jazz Center calling for blind auditions at Jazz at Lincoln Center: www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFZ5JCZkuZ8
In 2012 I documented a 10th Anniversary celebration of a straight couple in the bay area who decided to throw a fundraiser for marriage equality: http://vimeo.com/46561202
Here is one of my better pieces capturing jazz guitarist Terrence Brewer in action at Stanford Jazz: http://vimeo.com/44969762
Here's are examples of my jazz videos:
Won't you join me in this journey as I capture footage that you may not get to see or hear any other way? I hope so. And I look forward to sharing my work with you!
Thank you so much for your consideration. Let the music begin!
- Mindy Fong
- Mary Jenson
- Sharon Moore
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