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Introduction

Composing Our Stories is a short documentary student film following an orchestral composer and his approach to connecting human sentiment with music through a unique form of storytelling.

We want to share this documentary with as many people as possible. Your involvement, whether it be through donations or social media support, can help us to reach new audiences and continue to create as independent filmmakers and artists.

Meet the Director

Hello! I am Zoë Kissel, the director/editor/cinematographer of Composing Our Stories. For the past 5 months I have been working on Composing Our Stories and the day of completion is finally here. It’s bittersweet, finishing the film’s production, but also such a wonderful feeling to be able to share my creation and hard work with the world.

I am an East Lansing-based filmmaker, artist, and musician. I have always been a creator and film continues to be a platform of which I can share new worlds and stories. Originally from a small town south of Detroit, I now live in East Lansing, Michigan where I am pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Media & Information with a concentration in TV, Cinema, & Radio and a minor in Documentary Production at Michigan State University.

I applied to join the Documentary Production minor at Michigan State University as a way to learn new film techniques. I did not plan on falling in love with the beauty of non-fiction and the grace of consented voyeurism. Composing Our Stories is my first documentary film. Through the evolution of this project, I have discovered my infatuation with directing and editing. The honor of giving a voice to those who deserve to be heard and the opportunity to tell a story that post-production presents is my passion in filmmaking.

Filming Composing Our Stories was a thrill. Being able to share such an imaginative and successful person's mind with the world is an eye-opening experience. After watching the film and hearing Christian's stories, I hope that the audience is inspired to dream, create, and love a little bit more.

As an artist, I embrace the spirit of never slowing down. I am currently writing the screenplay for my next film Juice - a futuristic, film noir, short fiction film. Production for Juice is scheduled to begin August 2017.

What is Composing Our Stories?

Composing Our Stories is a short documentary student film following an orchestral composer and his approach to connecting human sentiment with music through a unique form of storytelling.

In the process of gathering the footage for Composing Our Stories, I shot about six hours of film and narrowed it down to a solid 35 minutes and 19 seconds. What began as a semester project quickly grew well past the semester’s allotted time. When I first heard Christian’s stories, I knew that the project deserved as much attention as it would need. I originally planned to film a documentary that simply celebrated the creativity of Christian’s mind and compositions. As the interviews preceded, I was more than pleasantly surprised to also find emotion and intimacy between him and the camera. A magical atmosphere of love, drama, and determination was created.

Why We Need Your Support

Not only are we independent filmmakers, we are students. This means that while we are writing, shooting, and editing our films, we are also attending school.

We want to send Composing Our Stories to film festivals to help extend our reach to new audiences around the world. With each festival, a submission fee is required.

We want to make each project better than the last. Your support can help us invest in the proper cinematic equipment to make the best film possible.

 And of course, we want to continue to make films. We have found our passion and a way to wake up and love what we do every day. As Christian says about his own experiences in Composing Our Stories, “That keeps me excited. And I hope that I continue to come up with stuff that I don’t see coming.”

Other Ways To Support

Share Composing Our Stories on social media and spread the word about our documentary!

Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/composingourstories

Follow our Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/COS_Documentary

Visit our website: https://www.composingourstories.com

 

If you are interested in viewing the full documentary or have any distribution, press, production, or screening rights inquires please send us an email at composingourstories@gmail.com or contact us through composingourstories.com.

 

Thank you for your involvement with Composing Our Stories!

 
Donate Here

REWARDS

$5 – Personal Thank You!

We want to thank you so much for your contribution to Composing Our Stories!
We will email you a personal thank you note expressing our gratitude for your support in our independent filmmaking.

Items Included:

-        Personal Thank You

$10 – Social Media Shout Out!

We will give you a shout out on all our social media platforms!
This includes Composing Our Stories’ Facebook, Twitter, and website news page, along with the director’s social media platforms.

Items Included:

-        Personal Thank You

-        Social Media Shout Out

$25 – Composing Our Stories Poster!

This donation tier gets you an official Composing Our Stories Poster!
The posters will be shipped within 5 to 7 days of donation unless otherwise noted. Shipping begins August 1, 2017.

Items Included:

-        Personal Thank You

-        Social Media Shout Out

-        Composing Our Stories Poster

 

$50 – The Film!

This tier includes a digital copy of Composing Our Stories!
We will send the film via email within 2-3 days of donation.

Items Included:

-        Personal Thank You

-        Social Media Shout Out

-        Composing Our Stories Poster (Hand-Signed by the director, Zoë Kissel)

-        The Film

$100 – Patron!

At our top donation tier, you will receive a Patron Credit on the homepage of our website, www.ComposingOurStories.com, showing your support for Composing Our Stories and independent artists alike.
You will also receive all previous rewards. Thank you so much!

Items Included:

-        Personal Thank You

-        Social Media Shout Out

-        Composing Our Stories Poster (Hand-Signed by the director, Zoë Kissel)

-        The Film

-        Patron Credit on the Homepage of www.ComposingOurStories.com