Inspiring Boldness Speaker Amy Adrion Encourages Students to Tell Their Stories
On Monday, April 22, Marymount High School welcomed award-winning documentarian and director Amy Adrion as a featured guest in the Inspiring Boldness Speaker Series. Ms. Adrion encouraged students to tell their stories no matter the medium and, in so doing, to lend personal perspective on the narratives told by the status quo.
“There are ways we can tell the stories in our lives – whether in business, politics, the arts, academia, or education – these lessons are applicable to every field,” she said.
Growing up in Hillsdale, NJ, Ms. Adrion shared that, though she had always been interested in filmmaking and storytelling, she didn’t have any reference for knowing how to create a career in that field. After graduating from Georgetown University with undergraduate degrees in English Literature and Theology, she reached out to her college alumni network, and met afilmmaker, who hired her as a production assistant. As Ms. Adrion’s production career developed, she knew that ultimately, she wanted to be the one telling the story.
After completing an MFA Film Directing program at UCLA, Ms. Adrion produced her debut feature, Half the Picture, which celebrates the groundbreaking work of women film and TV directors.
“It’s about women film and TV directors, and the systemic discrimination they face getting hired,” Ms. Adrion said. “It’s really a celebration of their tenacity and their artistry and their work.”
Half the Picture premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. The film won the #WhatNext Award at the Sundance Film Festival: London; the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Lighthouse Film Festival; and was nominated for the Chicken & Egg Award at the SXSW Film Festival. Additionally, Ms. Adrion’s work has been broadcast on PBS and MTV, and she is the recipient of numerous awards including a Directors Guild of America Student Film Award and the Impact Award at the Through Women’s Eyes Film Festival.
Marymount students were engaged by Ms. Andrion’s presentation, and they were inspired to think about ways in which they might use their own voices and perspectives to help shift unjust narratives, and to positively impact the narrative of the future.