Degrees and Certifications:
I’m Andrea. I’m a filmmaker and multimedia storyteller based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Yes, Morningstar is my real name. There’s a story there that involves the ghost of my husband’s great grandfather and the wax head replica of Gordie Howe that I can’t wait to tell you over a glass of wine. In the meantime, here are some facts about me.
School stuff: I earned an MFA in Filmmaking from the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee where I was a recipient of the Chancellor’s Graduate Student Award and a BFA in New Genres from University of Michigan- Ann Arbor where I received the Martin Luther King Student Leadership Award. I studied writing at the Salt Institute of Documentary Studies and completed a professional certificate in Film Production at the Maine Media Workshops.
Work highlights: My first professional documentary project, a radio piece titled My Pen Pal, about my friend Sarah York’s unlikely friendship with Manuel Noriega, when she was a 10 year old kid in Northern Michigan and he was the de facto ruler of Panama, became a feature story on This American Life.
Since then I’ve been working as a video producer/director, shooter of video and photography, content editor (I was the Editor in Chief of Great Lakes Bureau at Detroit PBS for a hot second) and a teacher. You can see a lot of that work, like the branded content piece I was nominated for an Emmy for, and the multiple video series I made for Public Radio, right here on my website. Oh, and speaking of de facto leaders, I also do some community organizing. I founded Final Girls, a collective of professional women filmmakers living and working in Detroit, Michigan that won the Knight Arts Challenge in 2014. In 2019 I founded Raconteuse Media, a production company run by a collective of New Orleans based women filmmakers.
I’m a founding faculty member of Interlochen Center for the Arts Motion Picture Arts Summer Program, where I established a documentary film major in collaboration with Michael Moore’s Traverse City Film Festival.
My big why: I’m a filmmaker because it allows me to bring all my experience across mediums; in radio, photography, writing, installation and performance, to work in one place. And because more than any single medium, in both process and content, it allows me to revel in human connections, and the cathartic experiences they lead to. Making a story is always its own story. I’m particularly drawn to the stories of creative boundary pushers, passionate eccentrics, and deeply humane visionaries who eschew societal norms to create new patterns in their lives and communities. I hope to be one of those people when I grow up.