: Fiction
GENRE: Student Film
STATUS: Post-Production


In 90s NY, a queer Asian punk discovers a room where dreams are recorded, awakening unknown desires.


Dissonance is an art house sci-fi short set in 1990s NYC, which follows a group of queer punks/misanthropes as they break into an abandoned warehouse before a night out at a queer club. Rio, a pensive and awkward queer Asian punk, decides to wander off to seek out what else the warehouse holds.


Dissonance is based around an idea I had as a child: I imagined a room lined with people in beds where dreams were recorded. Over the years, I continued to explore my fascination with dreams – documenting my own to make sense of their hidden messages and to see if others had the same desires I did. I came to realize my interest for dream voyeurism was due to my queer identity and gender presentation. Throughout the film, I want to explore the ways in which queer people of color have to affirm their own desires and self-worth. Casting the film, I will be specifically reaching out to queer, transgender, and gender fluid/gender non-conforming actors of color to play these roles. It’s incredibly important to me to have these communities represented in this film. I also want the film to showcase the work of queer and trans artist of color – queer, trans, and POC visual artists will create the dreams used in Dissonance. I chose to set Dissonance in the 1990s, because I vividly remember that particular point in time and saw how it was the verge of analog changing to digital. In order to capture the raw visceral feel of the 90s queer punk scene, we will be using handhand camera and honoring natural light in spaces to give a cinema verite feel. For the analog footage, we will use VHS cameras and Fisher Price Pixelvision – both create a textural quality and are nostalgic signifiers by their format alone. By switching between these mediums, it will give a more subjective perspective of the lead character and allow elements of the dream world to spill over into the waking world.


Elizabeth Balla - Producer

Elizabeth Balla, producer, is a New York City-based writer, director, and producer. She has worked under the tutelage of producers Gwen Bialic with Killer Films and Mike Ryan with Greyshack Films. Elizabeth has produced and directed numerous short films, music videos and commercials and worked as production manager, production coordinator and location manager on feature films. This past summer, she produced episodes for Half Life, a TV series funded by the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment promoting women in film. Elizabeth has produced projects outside of New York, notably in Louisiana, India and Turkey. Currently, Elizabeth is finishing a MFA in Producing at Brooklyn College Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema under Jason Kliot. She is a member of IFP as well as a tenured Adjunct Lecturer at The Fashion Institute of Technology.

Kim Garcia - Director

Kim Garcia, director/writer, is a Brooklyn-based narrative, documentary, and experimental video filmmaker, who is completing their MFA in Directing at Brooklyn College Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema. She has a passion for creating films that center around political and subversive queer communities and communities of color. Originally from the Bay Area, Kim was an IATSE Local 169 theater projectionist, specializing in 35mm, 70mm and digital 4K. They have worked in operations and as a theater technician at numerous film festivals, including Tribeca, Frameline, Nantucket, Hamptons, Newfest, SF Asian & Asian Am as well as projecting for Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread and Oprah’s The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks with directors in attendance. Kim volunteered at Bay Area Girls Rock Camp, a social justice youth organization, for six years. After moving to NYC in 2013, she became a staff member at Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls until 2016. Kim is currently finishing a documentary on the Universe is Lit/Multiverse is Illuminated, a community-organized, POC-centered music and arts festival in the Bay Area.

Kristen Meloche - Cinematographer

Kristen Meloche, cinematographer, is a Brooklyn-based director of photography, working on narrative, documentary, and commercial & branded content. After creative directing in the ad world for 10 years, she is currently pursuing a MFA in Cinematography at the Brooklyn College Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema. She has worked with several major national brands creating social media, print and broadcast campaigns. Most recently she was the DP for episodes of Half Life, a TV series starring Larisa Oleynik, funded by the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment to support women in film. She is a member of the Women's Weekend Film Challenge and New York Women in Film and Television.

Grace Novak - Editor

Grace Novak, editor, is an editor and colorist based in Brooklyn, NY currently working on her MFA in cinematic production at the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema. A native Virginian, she spends her time in NYC working on short films, documentaries and commercials. She loves the collaboration process of film making and meeting those who are just as passionate about post-production as she is! She most recently worked at the commercial post house Cut + Run and is the current editor of the comedic web series based in New York - “Extra/Ordinary”. You can see her work at her website http://gracenovak.com. Outside of video editing, she's also an avid gamer, reader and the producer and co-host of her podcast Saves Together. Her favorite juice is orange.


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