Director/Producer/Choreographer: Vera Wagman is an independent filmmaker who has written and directed short films including Interlude (Hypnotic Films, Sundance Channel), High Noon (PBS’ “Are We On”), Gangsta Camp (Funny or Die) and Jeopardy, a documentary short film about an at-risk youth program in Los Angeles where the students who trained as boxers also learned how to dance. She has worked with Jason Alexander in developing film and television projects for his company, Angel Ark Productions. Wagman started her career as a dancer with company credits including David Storey Danceworks/NY and Pennsylvania Dance Theatre where she worked with such innovative choreographers as Ohad Naharin, Kathryn Posin, Nina Weiner and Creach/Kester.
Executive Producer: Roberta Grossman is an award-winning filmmaker with a passion for history and social justice. She is the writer, producer, director of Who Will Write Our History, a documentary about Emanuel Ringelblum and the secret archives of the Warsaw Ghetto, co-produced by Arte and NDR. In 2018, Grossman co-directed and produced the Netflix Original Documentary Seeing Allred, about women’s rights attorney, Gloria Allred, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. Grossman directed Above and Beyond (2014), for producer Nancy Spielberg, about the American–Jewish WWII pilots who volunteered to fight in Israel’s War of Independence. Grossman also produced the NEH supported Dorothea Lange: Grab a Hunk of Lightning, which aired on PBS/American Masters in August 2014. Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh, Grossman’s 2008 film, was shortlisted for an Academy Award, aired on PBS, was nominated for a Primetime Emmy and won the audience award at 13 Jewish film festivals.
Story Consultant: Sophie Sartain is the Director and Producer of the Netflix Original Documentary, Seeing Allred, which premiered in competition at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. She wrote, directed, produced and shot the documentary, Mimi and Dona, which aired nationally on PBS/Independent Lens in 2015. Sartain’s other credits include the 2014 documentary, Above and Beyond (writer), produced by Nancy Spielberg and winner of the audience award at more than twenty film festivals; the 2012 documentary Hava Nagila (The Movie)(writer/producer), and the Emmy-nominated 2008 film Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senseh (writer/co-producer). She has contributed as a writer and consultant on several film projects including Ishi’s Return, Rock in the Red Zone, Hotel Everest, Feminists: What Were They Thinking, and In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee.
Producer: Russell Rothberg is currently Co-Executive Producer on Foundation, the SkyDance produced television series for Apple TV. He recently was Co-EP for the second season of Knightfall/The History Channel. He has also directed and produced his first comedy short, Happy Happy Bang Bang, co-produced by Vera Wagman, which screened at the 2018 Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival. As Executive Vice President, Drama Development at Universal Television, Rothberg developed several series including Bates Motel, The Path, Chicago Fire, Shades of Blue, Emerald City and Midnight, Texas.Russell also served as Vice President of Current Programming for Fox Broadcasting Company where he oversaw 24, House, Bones, American Dad and The Sarah Connor Chronicles. Before moving to Los Angeles, Rothberg started his career as an actor-writer director in New York’s Off-Broadway theatre with an original play, Life After Death at the Intar Theatre.
Co-Director/Director of Photography: Scott Whitham recently directed an award-winning documentary about Zion Harvey, a young boy who received the worlds first pediatric dual hand transplant. Plans are underway to expand the project into a feature length film. He is also in production on Burden of Memory, a documentary about a 97 year-old B-17 pilot and the remarkable life he has lived. Whitham has spent the last 25 years working with a wide range of clients in the commercial industry. Starting right out of college, he worked with several Fortune 500 companies (Merck Pharma, The Plaza Hotel and Tropicana Casino) to help create the right kinds of marketing messages to reach a diverse audience. Whitham continues to bring his mad skills to other clients including National Geographic, A&E Network, AT&T and Comcast.
Editor: Esther Shubinski's sensitivity and approach to storytelling are shaped by her French and Native American background. Her most recent feature documentary, Sundays, is set to premiere in competition at the 2020 Thessaloniki Documentary Festival.She has edited two episodes of the upcoming YouTube Originals series, Defying Gravity: The Untold Story of Women’s Gymnastics, directed by two time Oscar-nominee, Lucy Walker. Esther’s documentary, Out of Love, a festival favorite, premiered at the 2013 Telluride Film Festival to critical acclaim. She edited The Art of Observing Life, a documentary by her mentor and veteran Russian filmmaker, Marina Goldovskaya, which premiered at IDFA. Esther received her BA from UC Berkeley and holds an MFA in Film Production & Directing at UCLA, where she has also taught Documentary Production.
French Historian/Project Advisor: Laure Guilbert holds a Ph.D from the European University Institute of Florence and is the author of Danser avec le IIIe Reich. Les danseurs modernes sous le nazisme (Dancing with the Third Reich. Modern Dancers under Nazism Brussels: Editions Complexe, 2000, André Versaille Editeur, 2011). From 2002 to 2018, she was the Chief Editor for dance books of the Paris National Opera. She co-founded the Association des Chercheurs en Danse (ACD), as well as the online journal Recherches en Danse. In 2015 and 2016, she was a Marie Curie visiting fellow at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt-an-der-Oder (Axel Springer Endowed Chair for German-Jewish Literature and Cultural History, Exile and Migration), and at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin (Franco-German Research Centre for Social Sciences). Her second book which she is currently researching is on the exile of the German-speaking choreographic world under Nazism – a project that has led her to many archives in Europe, Australia and, most recently, as a Resident Fellow at New York University's Center for Ballet and the Arts. She will continue her research as a Fellow at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in January, 2020.