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After The Storm

Directed by: Hilla Medalia
89 Minutes, 2009, Documentary

A feature documentary, After The Storm captures the lives of the kids and crew as they turn a gym into a theater, come together as a company, and create hope and purpose in the midst of devastation and despair. After the Storm is a feature length documentary that follows the production of the musical Once On This Island at the St. Mark’s Community Center in New Orleans as it moves from the first round of auditions to the opening night performance and then on to a sold-out Off Broadway theater in New York City. The film explores the cultural landscape of New Orleans as seen through the eyes of a dozen teenage actors. As this creative journey unfolds, the young actors open up their hearts and homes to the film crew and reveal their personal stories of day-to-day survival in present-day New Orleans. It is from their perspective that we see this unique American city still struggling to piece itself back together two years after the hurricane. An emotional and entertaining experience celebrating the spirit and culture of New Orleans, this film is about how the power of story can bring a community together. The focus of the film is not on the storm’s devastation, but rather on how these “storm-tossed” teens are moving on with their lives after having lost everything. After the Storm documents the story of a people and a city that is beginning to piece itself together. The theatre project provided the kids with a unique experience and gave them the kind of professional training that is not readily available in New Orleans. But more than that, it created the opportunity for them to share their point of view and their stories while focusing on something other than just their day-to-day survival and allowing them to grow as individuals and shine as performers.


Director: Hilla Medalia

Producer: Hilla Medalia

Editor: Bob Eisenhardt, A.C.E.