The purpose of the Diversity Video Competition is to promote understanding and encourage dialogue on civil rights issues, stereotypes, and myths surrounding minority groups (with a particular anchor in the Sikh experience).
It is through this artistic dialogue between submitters and the viewing public that the Coalition hopes to combat ignorance, and encourage all to embrace their diversity.
2012 Competition Topic
My Crown - My Faith
How does it feel to be a Sikh? Why don’t you try! Walk a mile in our shoes!
Film-makers are encouraged to create a 5 minute video (or less) which depicts a non-Sikh adorning/wearing a Sikh turban for a day, and presenting himself/herself as a Sikh. The turban is a Sikh article of faith, and should always be treated with respect. The film should capture the reactions of passersby, friends, and family members. Pre and post interviews with main characters are encouraged.
Meet Your Winners!
Over 1,000 public votes were cast to determine the top videos for this year’s Diversity Video Competition!
Satdeep Singh took first place with his film, “Taaj” and won the grand prize of $1500! Taaj was premiered at the Sikh International Film Festival in New York City last weekend and will also be shown at the Sikh Lens 2012 Sikh Art and Film Festival in Orange, California on November 16.
Abril Murillo won second place ($750) with her film, “Coexist”. The Sikh Coalition also recognized James Magazzino for his film “A Day with a Crown”, and decided to award him a third place prize of $375.
First Place Winner - “Taaj” by Satdeep Singh
About the Filmmaker - Satdeep Singh
For the wish of my parents I did my graduation in Mechanical Engineering and worked as Senior Research Fellow in a Govt. research organization for 3 years, but for my childhood passion and dreams, I kept writing and directing stage plays throughout that time and currently working full time in Film Making as a Screenplay writer and Film Director. My dream is to make world class movies that can effectively spread Guru Granth Sahib Ji's message to the entire mankind.
Second Place Winner - “Coexist” by Abril Murillo
About the Filmmaker - Abril Murillo
Abril Murillo is a senior majoring in Journalism and minoring in Film & Media arts at the Southern Methodist University. She will major in May of 2013. Abril was born in Chihuahua, Mexico and moved to Dallas four years ago. Her passion for film and her real life experiences inspired her to create her video. As part of a minority group she hopes to create awareness and advocate for equality for all groups coexisting in this world.
Third Place Winner - “A Day with a Crown” by James Magazzino
About the Filmmaker - James Magazzino
James Magazzino picked up a camera when he was 16 and never put it down. He was born in Italy and was raised by an Italian father and American mother giving him an international outlook on life. He was introduced into the world of cinematography in high school when he took an intro to film and shortly after decided that he wanted to make a carrier out of it. He is now a film major at the University of Texas at Arlington and is anticipated to graduate in the spring of 2016.
Panel of Expert Judges
Paul Johar is a Diplomate of the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons. He is also a fellow of the American College and American Association of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons. He is currently the managing partner of Adirondack Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery, a full scope practice based in Albany, NY. Paul is also an integral part of Sikh Art and Film Foundation and Chairs their Annual International Sikh Film Festival.
Jasmeet Singh (JusReign) specializes in creating web content such as comedic skits, parodies, and re-enactments of every day life in forms of online video and stand-up. His passion for comedy and creating media content started at a young age, lying within the roots of making home videos and presenting standup to his close family and friends. With the creation of online media and the popular website Youtube, Jus Reign took the opportunity to present his humour and talent in the summer of '09 to a wide array of audiences through easily accessible online content.
Kevin B. Lee is a filmmaker and critic based in New York City. His credits include the award-winning documentaries “Dastaar: Defending Sikh Identity” and “Take a Look: Chinatown NYC Post-9/11.” He has produced three short films that have been broadcast on PBS' "Reel New York" series and has screened his work at several festivals. Kevinis Vice President of Programming and Education for dGenerate Films. His responsibilities include identifying the best works of independent Chinese cinema for the dGenerate catalog and consulting with educators on using dGenerate films in their teaching and scholarship. Kevin also writes prolifically on film and has been published in Time Out New York, Cinema-scope, Cineaste and the Chicago Reader.
Tej Singh Hazra As the Head of Diversity and Inclusion for HSBC Bank Canada, Tej Singh Hazra is mandated to enable the bank to continue to compete locally and internationally for talent and customers alike by leveraging it's work force nationally and to improve organizational performance. Strategic to his role is the establishment of a business strategy for effectively managing a diverse work-force, empowering all employees to reach their full potential, the creation of an inclusive and engaging work environment that is culturally competent, Attracting, Retaining and Advancing talent that reflects the marketplace and removing cultural and social barriers that hinder progress.
Tej's passion for film and documentary made 'for, by and about' Sikhs allowed him to serve as lead film researcher for the Toronto Spinning Wheel Festival in past years.
Manbeena Kaur is the Education Director for the Sikh Coalition. The long term goal of the Education program is to create a cultural shift in the minds of the general public and to ensure that people have positive associations with Sikhs and Sikh practices. Manbeena has led various nationwide and regional education projects in order to achieve this end. She has been involved with and overseen several film projects for the Coalition, and has had four years of experience in both film capture and editing.