Youth Jury 2015

For five years now, VLAFF’s Youth Jury has brought together students from across the Lower Mainland to discuss, debate and discover a new wave of Latin American cinema. Throughout the course of this year’s festival, the Youth Jury will watch all eight films in the New Directors Competition. On September 13, they will present the Youth Choice Award at the Closing Ceremony.

Join us in welcoming the ten members of the 2015 VLAFF Youth Jury!!

Paola Adarve Zuluaga was born and raised in Colombia. Her home country’s reality has driven her interest in social justice issues, especially in relation to feminism and artistic practices. Her latest interest involves the impact of artistic practices and of artists themselves in contexts of violence. She has a B.A. in Anthropology and a B.A. in Languages and Sociocultural Studies and is currently finishing her Masters in Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Social Justice at UBC.

Idrian Burgos is a Douglas College student in International Studies. Since his discovery and exposure to the Hispanic heritage of his native country of the Philippines, the re-emphasis of its Spanish aspect has become one of his goals and passions. He wishes for further strengthening of the link between the countries and territories that form La Hispanidad. Idrian writes fiction and non-fiction in Tagalog and English, and is in the primary stage of writing in Spanish.

Laura De Pascale is an Italian-Colombian freelance artist from Italy. After a brief adventure in London studying at Central Saint Martin's College of Art, she moved to Vancouver to pursue her passion for visual arts and to study 2D animation at Capilano University. She stayed here for the forests and her new Canadian family, and is now honoured to be part of the 2015 Youth Jury, celebrating Latin American cinematographic achievements.

Pilar Garrett was born in Brazil, raised in California, and currently resides in Vancouver. She considers herself to be a hybridized product of three cultural worlds. As a result of this transcontinental upbringing as well as her personal interest in the media arts, the majority of her academic work as a UBC graduate explores the interactions between contemporary media and the public construction of national and cultural identity. Viva arte! Viva filme!

Jovanna Lord is a small business owner and a passionate freelancer. She has recently returned to Vancouver after living in Guadalajara, Jalisco for several years. She is excited to celebrate Mexican cinema in her hometown and honoured to be a part of the 2015 Youth Jury. When Jovanna isn’t sitting in front of a computer or the silver screen, she can be found exploring local trails with her tapatío dog.

Nikkita Nair is an undergraduate at UBC, majoring in International Relations. Originally from Singapore, she has extensive experience in Latin American politics, global history and international trade. Passionate about travel, languages and immersing herself in new cultures, Nikkita is constantly looking for ways to contribute to the global community. She is particularly excited to be part of the Youth Jury as she believes films play a strong role in shaping societies.

Catalina Parra is a Latin Americanist, who obtained an important component of her studies through the streets of her barrio in Bogotá, Colombia. Later, she earned a B.A. in Latin American Studies from SFU, which led her to live in various countries in South America. Her passion lies in the sociocultural complexities of the region, and the importance of reviving Indigenous values and traditions as a means to foster an equitable post-colonial Latin America.

Kratna Ramírez was born in Mexico City and grew up in the United States and Canada. As a UBC student pursuing a career in Social Work, Kratna finds film to be an excellent platform to explore themes surrounding social justice, including sexuality, gender, identity politics and racial justice. As an immigrant since a young age Kratna is passionate about discovering her Latin American roots through family, food, history, literature, travel and art.

Maria Cecilia Saba was born in São Paulo, Brazil, and raised in Lima, Peru. Her passion for cultural diversity, visual anthropology and the arts inspired her to study Audiovisual Communication. After two years of working as a Video and Documentary instructor, she moved to Vancouver to pursue an M.A. in Comparative Media Arts at SFU. She is currently organizing an Andean Horror Film Fest, featuring films that explore political violence through Andean folklore.

Millie Wissar started her career as a videographer and audiovisual instructor at the Universidad de Lima in Peru. In 2014, her passion for filmmaking drove her to study sound design at the Vancouver Film School, where she polished her craft in audio post-production. She recently graduated as a Sound Designer with the goal to work internationally as a freelance video and sound editor.