13 November, 2017

Chanda Chevannes

Chanda is a storyteller who aims to make documentaries that deal with complex social issues in an artistic way. Her work focuses on amplifying women’s voices and bringing their personal lives into the public sphere as political commentary. Chanda’s most recent film is UNFRACTURED had its World Premiere as the opening night film at the Planet in Focus Film Festival in Toronto,  where it also took home the award for Best Canadian Feature. The film had its International Premiere at DOC NYC this month, where it received a standing ovation.

Before UNFRACTURED, Chanda was best-known for Living Downstrea which won multiple awards, was broadcast on six continents, and has been seen by over 4 million people. In 2005 and 2006, Chanda lived in Uganda, producing educational films with Raising Voices, and before becoming a director, Chanda was an associate producer and production manager at Primitive Entertainment where she worked on 13 productions ranging from series to documentaries.    Chanda is passionate about using media for social change and public education. She has authored several educational resources, including a pair of 200-page guides for individuals and groups using Living Downstream, two blogs for the National Film Board of Canada’s CitizenSHIFT website, and a monthly column on documentary films and their makers for Troy Media. Chanda has trained as an artist-educator with the Royal Conservatory and as a workshop facilitator with the Alternatives to Violence Project. She has led filmmaking workshops in a variety of settings, ranging from universities to public libraries. She is an instructor in the Business of Film and Television post-graduate program at Centennial College’s Story Arts Centre. In 2014, she was an Innovator in Communities with the Toronto Public Library, where she led a series of filmmaking workshops for residents in the underserved communities of North York and Scarborough.   

In 2015, Chanda was a recipient of the prestigious Chalmers Arts Fellowship, which enables Ontario-based artists to take their work in new creative directions. In 2013, she received a Gracie Award from the Alliance for Women in Media and was named a Woman to Watch by Sydney’s Buzz on Indie Wire.

Chanda lives in Toronto with her two children Hannah and Henry. Chanda is a graduate of Sheridan College’s Media Arts Program; a former board member of the Documentary Organization of Canada; and a founding member of the Toronto Chapter of Film Fatales, a collective of women filmmakers.  

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