Away Yet Awake-An Immigrant Experience

“I wanted to make a film that told the stories of our respective journeys as refugees”

Joyeuse Muhorakeye, Director and Rwandan Refugee

Two of the crew members, Joyeuse Muhorakeye and Enock Sadiki, are both refugees, from Rwanda and Uganda respectively. During ideation sessions they had suggested exploring the topic of “the immigrant experience”.

The writers in the crew, Owen Cummings and Sydney Robinson, suggested motion poetry as a visual treatment, which then led to a “composite poem”, written by several other refugee poets who were recruited into the project.

Once the treatment and production plan was developed, the 2-day production got underway, using one of Fourthwall’s 4K Blackmagic cameras.

To date, the film has won three festival awards. It has also been shown in numerous communities around the city as part of the Aiken High School refugee welcome campaign.

The crew for Away Yet Awake was hired through the City of Cincinnati Youth to Work program, co-sponsored by Artworks and the Cincinnati Recreation Commission.

Away Yet Awake
An Immigrant Experience


Director: Joyeuse Muhorakeye
Producer: Enock Sadiki
Writers: Owen Cummings, Sydney Robinson
DP: Trey Small
Lighting: Lynae Spruance
Assistant Director: Max Matarazzo
Audio: Lilian Chesak

Camera: Blackmagic Pocket Cinema 4K
Location: Artsville
Shoot Duration: 2 Days


  • Audience Choice Award 2021 OINK Film Festival
  • Official Selection 2022 Athens Film + Video Festival
  • Honorable Mention Atlanta High School Film Festival

Behind The Scenes

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