Archive for the Producer Category

Vivir Del Cuento, a Transmedia Project on Ecuador’s Oral Storytelling Tradition

Stop Motion Workshops | Cultural Animation Series | Documentary

by Giovanna Aguilar

I am excited to announce that I have signed on as an Executive Producer of Vivir Del Cuento, both the name of the transmedia project and the production company whose members are an incredibly talented team of storytellers based in Quito, Ecuador.

It found me through the light and talents of Bernarda Cornejo. With the utmost respect for the work that has begun with so much spirit during a tragic time in Ecuador’s history, I am honored and humbled to be included in this venture honoring cultural diversity and oral tradition.

In recognition of Vivir del Cuento’s invaluable impact as a storytelling project highlighting the narratives of Ecuadorians displaced by the 2016 earthquake, the United States Embassy in Quito, Ecuador awarded this project a Federal Assistance grant of $23,000.

How a Tragic Earthquatke Inspired Vivir Del Cuento

On April 16, 2016, Ecuador was devastated by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that directly affected two provinces: Manabi and Esmeraldas.

In response to the catastrophe, a team of talented media professionals set off on a journey to preserve the oral traditions of Manabi and Esmeraldas. In the process, Felipe Lemarie, Juan Suárez, Olivia Garzón, Miguel Mateo Cármenes, Bernarda Cornejo and Paula Jácome formed their production company Vivir Del Cuento in collaboration with the animation and design studio ANANAY, which in Quichua means something beautiful or cool.

They began their venture by producing workshops to teach children how to create short videos and develop their storytelling skills with stop motion animation. Together, the production team and the children, have been capturing the cultural traditions handed down by respected elders in their local communities.

ANANAY’s goal with Vivir del Cuento is to safeguard the cultural integrity and diversity of these regions by igniting youth’s interest in their ancestry, empowering youth’s storytelling skills, and capturing all of this process in a documentary format for educational purposes at all levels.

Check back for updates on this project in July 2017, including information on how you can be part of and help broaden the reach and impact of Vivir del Cuento’s mission.

Creditos Vivir del Cuento

En Colaboración con:

Dumas Mora
María Mercedes Zambrano
Línver Nazareno
Rosa Wila

Productora Ejecutiva
Candesco Productions
Giovanna Aguilar

Felipe Lemarie
Juan Suárez

Olivia Garzón
Miguel Mateo Cármenes

Bernarda Cornejo y Paula Jácome





























Documentary DreamTown Screening at Yale Feb 1 at 7pm

DreamTown Ecuador/USA. 2016 (Director Betty Bastidas)

Q&A with producer Giovanna Aguilar

DETAILS: Wednesday, February 1, 2017
7 p.m., Luce Hall Auditorium
34 Hillhouse Ave., New Haven 06511




Dreamtown is the inspiring story of three young Afro-Ecuadorian soccer players from La Chota who chase success in the face of extraordinary challenges. Entwined with their athletic dreams are the hopes of all Afro-Ecuadorians for whom soccer is more than a sport–it’s a means to attain recognition and respect.…/

Free and open to the general public.
Spanish with English subtitles.




On Vérité with Emmy Nominated Director-Writer-Producer Reinaldo Marcus Green

On Vérité Top List:  “What do you wish you had known on your first independent film?”

Reinaldo Marcus Green, one of the 25 New Faces of Independent Film (2015) and recipient of the Spike Lee Film Production Grant 2016 (Monsters and Men,) shares best practices with Giovanna Aguilar on filmmaking.

On Vérité Top List for Independent Filmmakers is complementary content for an upcoming written article to be published on my blog at Giovanna Aguilar.

Watch Reinaldo Marcus Green’s acclaimed short film STOP—a young man’s livelihood is put to the test when he gets profiled and stopped by the police on his way home from practice, courtesy of Conde Nast’s steaming platform The Scene.

Giovanna Aguilar

HourGlass Gets ON YOUR FEET! FULL ACCESS with Gloria and Emilio Estefan and Jerry Mitchell

As the executive producer and co-host of the podcast HourGlass Time to Talk, I am proud and excited to release the promo of On Your Feet! Full Access, up-close and personal interviews that my co-host Maria Torres and I conducted with multi Grammy Winners Gloria and Emilio Estefan and Tony Winner Jerry Mitchell, who share their journey of bringing their story to Broadway and living the American dream. These upcoming episodes are especially close to HourGlass co-host Maria Torres who is also the associate choreographer for the show.

FULL EPISODES will be released soon that also include interviews in Spanish with Emilio and Gloria Estefan and On Your Feet’s choreographer Sergio Trujillo who joins Maria Torres on the segment—Kick, Ball, Change – Keep it Moving!

HourGlass On Your Feet! Full Access Credits

HourGlass is an original podcast production hosted by creators and producers Maria Torres and Giovanna Aguilar.

We would like to give a special thanks to all who made On Your Feet Full Access possible: Emilio and Gloria Estefan, Jerry Mitchell, the Nederlander Organization, the Marquis Theater, Christina Boursiquot and Mandy Tate from the Charlotte Wilcox Company.

In addition, we are very grateful to Elka Samuels Smith of Divine Rhythm Productions and our Grammy nominated musician/composer, Roman Rojas who were on location assisting with these recordings.

HourGlass’s original music is composed by Roman Rojas.


Ep. 3 HourGlass Talks with Talented Dancer-Performer-Arts Activist –

Paying It Forward through the Arts

Here is the latest episode of my podcast, HourGlass, an interview that my co-host and I conducted with Marina Micallizi, an inspirational young talent who shared her story about the importance of the arts for helping others.

In 2005 Maria Torres auditioned young dancers to take part in a Broadway style production number to be performed at Jazz at Lincoln Center for the Upfronts as part of the cartoon Class of 3000, based on Andre 3000 (Outkast)), and is blown away by a talented 10-year old—Marina Micallizi. Since then a mentor-mentee relationship has flourished, sparked by Maria’s passion to help Marina light up not only on the stage but also behind the scenes, leading Marina on her own journey to pay it forward by exposing others to the healing power of the arts. Marina believes that we each have the power to light the darkness and she hopes to create a better, brighter world.Marina credits as a performer include on Disney’s film Enchanted, the Broadway musicals How the Grinch Stole Christmas the Musical and Billy Elliot, and other notable productions as well as assistant to top choreographers such as Brian Friedman, Mia Michaels, Dave Scott, Laurie Ann Gibson, Chris Judd and Shane Sparks.

Hour Glass Time to Talk about the stories shaping the artist – an original Podcast created, produced and hosted by Maria Torres and Giovanna Aguilar

Episode #3: Interview with Marina Micalizzi

Music Theme: Roman Rojas

Editor: Parker Robinson
Episode 3# Sound Mixer: Carlos Berrios
In Studio Engineer: Peter Scozzari

Recording Studio: Madpan Productions


College Students Express Need for More Conversations on Arts & Entertainment

_DSC0728-Edit-Edit-2On Wednesday, September 30, 2015, I produced my very first panel on arts and entertainment at Montclair State University, which included a last-minute adjustment to the speakers’ list, the talented actor-producer-writer-director Adrian Martinez  who was game to join the conversation a day before the event after one of the panelists canceled due to film shooting commitments. If you want to produce, you have to ready for such changes and be quick to reach out to your contacts to ensure the production continues on track. Adrian, whom can be seen on so many films, TV shows and commercials that I feel remiss mentioning  just one, has supported me before when he sat with me in a studio to record an interview for LatinSlate, a podcast I hosted and produced when I was the public relations chair for the New York Chapter of NALIP. In addition, I am in deep gratitude for all who participated in this event: moderator Courtney A. Fitzgibbons who recently joined MSU’s College of the Arts as the Director of Career Services; percussionist-drummer-singer Karina Colis, Grammy-Award winning music producer Steve Pageot;  music producer Roman Rojas, engineer on the 2015 Grammy nominated record, “Chino y Nacho for Babies” (Chino y Nacho); and of course Memorial Auditorium’s manager and crew who ensured the event flowed without a glitch, Gene Lotito, Michael J. Aquino and the amazing team.

Slide1But we were all gathered to connect and motivate students who joined us to hear how they can prepare for careers in the competitive world of arts and entertainment. As an independent multimedia producer, I have been working with college students on various of my projects, bringing them on to gain hands-on experience and college credit, including my most recent intern, Parker Robinson who works with me on a HourGlass, a podcast I host and produce with acclaimed choreographer, director Maria Torres, who is  currently on the creative team of the Broadway Musical On Your Feet. This experience has inspired me more than I can ever contribute to a student’s industry skills. Each student has brought passion, talent and an unwavering commitment to their craft, which continues to awe me with each experience. I learn more from them than I can share. It is truly one of the most rewarding professional experiences I’ve had, and on the personal level it has touched me to continue work that in some way helps me pay it forward, or serve as a mentor type.

After Courtney Fitzgibbons concluded the panel discussion, we all had the opportunity to meet with students who expressed deep interest in attending more of these types of discussions to help them connect with working artists across disciplines. Apparently, this was also the first time MSU hosted this type of event – a panel discussion with professional artists discussing Arts & Entertainment matters at Memorial Auditorium, a 988-seat multi-cultural presentation/performance venue.

Arts & Entertainment Panel on 9/30 at Montclair State University Distinguished Entertainment Industry Professionals

Arts and Entertainment Panel Coming to Montclair State University on 9/30

Distinguished Entertainment Industry Professionals to Share Experiences with College Students

I’d like to thank Julia Siegel, a talented college student at MSU, for crafting a press release of the upcoming event I’m producing at Montclair State University.

– Giovanna



News Release

September 15, 2015


Contact Information:

Julia Siegel

Montclair State University

Phone: 973-525-9834



MONTCLAIR, NJ – Montclair State University’s CART Career Services is teaming up with Giovanna Aguilar to present the first ever Arts and Entertainment Panel on Wednesday, September 30, 2015. The panel will be held at Montclair State University’s Memorial Auditorium from 3-5pm and will include four entertainment industry professionals*: Grammy Award winning artist Steve Pageot, world-renowned choreographer Maria Torres, producer/musician Roman Rojas, and Latin American musician Karina Colis. Each panelist will share their personal journeys to success and give keen insight on how to advance one’s career in the entertainment and arts industries. The panel is free and open to students of all majors.

Co-producer Giovanna Aguilar has helped to construct the panel by inviting a few of her colleagues to speak about what she calls “one of the most competitive fields in the arts” – the music industry. She hopes that the panel will illustrate key concepts of success for students, such as how professionals put their best foot forward, being resourceful, continuing to follow one’s dreams even when times are tough, coping with rejection when applying for jobs, how to market and network one’s self, and being proactive in one’s field. Aguilar says that these are all “transferable experiences that are applicable to any field,” which is why she is inviting students of all majors to attend. She said, “All majors can benefit from hearing real-life experiences of what it means to follow a passion and build a career around it.”

Aguilar says she created the panel because “working with college students has been one of the most rewarding experiences for me both personally and professionally.” She wants students to have the experience in college that she never had – having a professional contribute as mentors. She wants college students to understand what the future will hold and what “the real world” is truly like. She says that “education is the key to success,” which is why she hopes the panel will inspire students to follow their dreams. The most intriguing part of the panel should be when the audience gets to ask questions to the panelists. Aguilar hopes that this will help “to draw a bridge between the dream of being an artist and the reality of what it takes to be a working-professional artist in the entertainment industry, and that through the conversation students can be inspired to build their path to success with these shared experiences – knowledge.”

Aguilar is a writer, producer, and director of films. She runs Candesco Productions, a multimedia content production company. According to her website,, she is a versatile writer who has developed content for print and digital media. She is currently producing the multi grant-awarded documentary “DreamTown,” which can be seen in short form on PBS’s “Frontline World Rough Cut.” Aguilar is also currently writing a feature-length film script.

According to, Steve Pageot won a Grammy Award for his engineering work on Aretha Franklin’s “Wonderful.” He is a music composer, producer, engineer and mixer. Steve worked under famed producer Ron Lawrence, whose clients include Diddy, B.I.G., and LL Cool J, which led him to earn a platinum plaque for Krayzie Bone’s “Thug Mentality 1999.” Steve went to score some of MTV’s shows, including Rob and Big and Run’s House. He has composed and produced music for many television shows and a few films.

Maria Torres is an award winning choreographer and director for Broadway shows, television series, and films. According to her website, she starred in six-time Tony Award nominated Broadway show “Swing!” and appeared in the film “Dance with Me” starring Vanessa Williams. She is a two-time CLEO Award winner for her choreography and a two-time Choreography Festival Awards winner as a guest choreographer on the television series “So You Think You Can Dance.” Maria also worked on the choreography for the Academy Award nominated Disney film “Enchanted.” She is a member of the creative team for the upcoming Broadway musical “On Your Feet” and is involved in co-host Giovanna Aguilar’s podcast “HourGlass.”

Roman Rojas is a music producer and songwriter from Venezuela. According to, he worked for music production company JSM Music, where he headed the company’s Hispanic division. He also wrote music for many companies’ commercials, including Subway and Adidas. His work can also be heard in television shows, like “Real Housewives of Miami,” and the film “Drunk Wedding.”

Karina Colis is a Latin American musician, percussionist, drummer, vocalist, and composer. According to, she has her work portrayed in more than fifteen albums. Her work can be heard the travel and lifestyle television show, “Raw Travel.” She has worked and performed with artists from all around the world.

Aguilar would like to thank Pauline Allen, Melissa Faulkner, Courtney Fitzgibbons, and Montclair State University for the opportunity of producing her first event. She says she will be developing the event “into a broader full-day event with speakers across industries and with relevant workshops that can help students prepare for careers not only in the arts but across a spectrum of industries that are continually reliant on creative minds – creative leaders for innovation.”

The Arts and Entertainment Panel is being co-hosted by Pauline Allen, the Director of Employer Relations at Montclair State University’s CART Career Service. Any further questions about the event should be directed to Allen at All attending students should register to for the event on the CART webpage and bring their Student ID’s to the event.

*Panelists are subject to change.


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