Discover the world's best short films

Discover the world's best short films

Interview with Ruth Mair Howard-Jones

Director/Producer of

Ruth Mair Howard-Jones

What was the inspiration behind making this short film?

During this unprecedented time of the World’s theatres of all sizes being dark, while the World’s population tries to protect itself and heal, the world itself also healing too. News tells of air quality in China being better than for years as lockdowns have substantially reduced industrial production. While we all need jobs to spring back this disaster highlights the need for us to rise to the challenge of caring for our planet, for each other, and how very important connection is for everyone. Living in an isolated dis-jointed world, missing friends, family, laughter and seeing the work in my world all cancelled all I wanted to do was reach out and touch another human. The song rang on my head coupled with the words from the poem “it was the best of times…” I began teaching students over zoom to keep them connected to each other and not loose the progress they had made and the feel good factor of dance, to try in my small way to keep morale up.

Was there any particular challenges you had to go through to make the short film happen?

No dance studios, no work. therefore I set about working around the world, without leaving my front room. Time zones made it extremely challenging as I am also a single mum and in lock down everyone still had to be at “school” at 830 am.. then sickness an ugly challenge. Indeed challenges were many. The first being overcoming self doubt to share my idea with another remote human! then challenges arose such as languages! I wish I could speak all Languages, I adore language written, sung danced, However working with dancers who live in less fortunate areas with no or little access to the internet that we take for grated made of even more difficult. I speak a few languages but sadly not Chinese or Brazilian. Getting the Voice recording at a high enough quality was also a challenge but eventually overcome with use of Apple products and recording apps.

How has the short film been received?

I was blown away by the response to ‘Sono Con Te’. The numbers of views and the comments of people. The film was reviewed and interviews appeared in the Wonderful World of Dance magazine, along with pod cast interviews with Mayara Magri and Leticia Dias. Winning an award at the Phoenix International Short Film Festival having been picked up from Instagram was seriously cool and I am grateful to the platform.

Do you have any other projects in the pipeline?

I am currently working on two new ideas. One a short and one for larger main stream release. both using medium of dance to tell the tales. Besides this I am hoping to have a live performance in a not regulate venue soon.

What advice would you give to anyone wanting to make their first short film?

I made ‘Sono con te’ firstly as I had to, it was keeping me awake. I wanted to say something to some people and although I realise that each time I create something I will always have to break down the wall of fear that self doubt causes, I hope I am learning to trust my desire to create more than the doubt of my ability to create it, and that when I am being true to myself I do create works that “speak” to others. So therefore create and don’t listen to my fear of everyone hating it or thinking it vapid and the disappointment, although its not that I care that much what people think its that I would witness my children feeling sorry for me, seeing me put so much energy and time into a project, or have them feel or embarrassment for me would be soul soul destroying. So listen to the small voice within and know that if you are being truthful to yourself, you are answering your calling and therefore nothing else matters.

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