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Arts in the Hood with Madison Thomas – Sept. 16

Visit Redwood Studio 57 to register for our “Arts in the Hood” Talk with Director & Sisler Alumni Madison Thomas – Sept 16th

soapboxed madison sept 16

Workshop Information:

  • Sept 16th, 2016
  • Sisler’s Redwood Studio 57
  • TBD. 15-20 minute portfolio presentation, followed by a hands-on workshop and concludes with a Q & A session


About Madison:

the following info is from

Sisler High School Alumni, Madison Thomas is a filmmaker from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Raised in a Metis household, storytelling was a huge part of Madison’s childhood. She found the natural extension into filmmaking in high school and has worked at honing her craft since. Madison studied filmmaking at the University of Winnipeg, receiving her Bachelor of Arts in 2012, and in 2011 was accepted into Prague Film School’s summer program. She was the first Canadian to attend in five years and the first Aboriginal person to ever be accepted into the program. Madison’s first feature film “This Is Why We Fight,” a gritty post apocalyptic set in Winnipeg premiered at LA’s Indiefest in 2013 and won an award of excellence. “This Is Why We Fight” enjoyed its Canadian theatrical premiere in Madison’s hometown and the film’s setting Winnipeg. In the fall of 2014 Madison represented her hometown once again as she competed for a $45,000 production deal on CBC’s “Short Film Faceoff,” a national competition series. Madison has partnered with Canadian Cinematographer Andrew Luczenczyn and together they work under the company “Prairie Kid Productions”. The pair now have a dozen shorts, a feature and a documentary to their name and have screened at film festivals globally. Madison consistently partners with inner city organizations and teaches film to youth in hopes the future filmmakers among them will become motivated the same way she did.


2016                     Exposed Nerves (Short) (completed)
2015                      The Middles (Short) (completed)
2014                      Seven Drinks (Short)
2014                      Heart Wired (Short)
2013                      This Is Why We Fight (Short)

Six Questions with Madison:

What motivates you?

For me, like most artists I think, motivation can sometimes be a difficult thing to find. We don’t have clear markers of success and progress like a lot of professions do. From within I think it comes from a place of wanting to share unique stories through film that might not be told otherwise. Externally I find motivation from my communities, friends and my students. When I see my colleagues making cool films and art it motivates me to do the same. My students motivate me with their energy and willingness to learn which motivates me to be the best role model I can be for them but as an artist and as a person.

What do you do for a living and what do you love about it?

I’m a professional filmmaker and an educator. In film my main fields are Writing, Directing and Picture Editing but I have experience in many crew positions as well. I love the flexibility film gives me in my storytelling and the collaboration it allows me to have with so many talented artists. As an educator I teach film for various organizations. I love sharing my love for the medium with young people and hopefully inspiring those who want to pursue it to do so in the same way I was.

Why are you excited to speak at Tedx?

I’m excited to share my unique take on the benefits of arts programming for inner city youth because it’s a topic I think a lot of people outside these communities have given thought to but not delved into fully. Once you get into some of the social and mental health applications it’s truly remarkable how connected it all is.

What Ted Talk (or TEDx Talk) do you think everyone should watch?

I was really inspired by Jeff Duncan-Andrade’s talk “Growing Roses in Concrete” which talks about people returning to the hood after becoming successful to raise communities up.

Why is your idea worth spreading?

On it’s base level it’s about giving disadvantaged kids a fundamental tool to help them face obstacles that stand between them and success but on a larger scale it’s about giving communities and individuals the power to change the arts scene as a whole.

What do you do with a completely free weekend?

Either going to see live music with friends or going on a hike out in nature. It’s all about those two extremes for me.