meet a lot of interesting people in LA, especially filmmakers, writers,
actors and aspiring artists of all types. I love hearing their stories
of inspiration, perspiration and the incredible amount of drive that
lives in all of us to accomplish our hopes and dreams.
Recently, I was lucky to meet one woman, Heather Connell, who hails from a small town in Massachusetts, not far from where I grew up myself. Heather moved to LA a few years back in hopes of following one of her biggest passions: making documentary films that deal with social issues. Heather, a go-getter to say the least, wasted no time in putting her dreams into motion. In 2006 she began the initial stages of filming her very first documentary about a subject she is very passionate about: the lives of children in third world countries.
Please take a moment and read the incredible story of how "Small Voices: The Stories of Cambodia's Children" was born, written by producer/director Heather Connell (originally published in IT Magazine).
And if you're interested in purchasing a copy of the DVD, being released this week, you can visit http://www.smallvoicesmovie.com/. Please support amazing lesbian artists!
"Small Voices: The Stories of Cambodia's Children" by Heather Connell
It was well over 100 degrees with 100% humidity the morning I arrived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in early March of 2006. Despite the fact my photographer Theresa and I had just spent a VERY long 24 hours of travel time crammed into the most decrepit airplane ever -- I was feeling energized. After a year's worth of pre-production, I was finally ready to begin filming on my documentary Small Voices: The Stories Of Cambodia's Children, an in depth examination of the struggles of the street and garbage dump children who live and work in a society that has largely forgotten them.
I couldn't wait to get started -- as we took a taxi to our hotel on the Tonle Sap River, I begin planning how I would find the street children. Where did they hang out? What part of the city did they live and beg? I decided I would spend that first day speaking to people and finding where these children were so I could begin my work. First, I decided to walk from our hotel to a nearby store to buy some bottled water. In those three dusty, grimy blocks, children and beggars besieged me. A sickly woman with a naked baby held her hand out from where she sat looking up at me from the curb. Poverty was everywhere and I'd only gone three blocks. I realized I didn't have to search for what I was looking for. All I had to do was open my eyes. I have since realized that this is a concept we should all pay more attention too. If we all take the time to just open our eyes to what is going on in the world around us and in our own backyard, what a difference we could make.