Documentary Feature | 87 minutes

HIFF 2022

 World Cinema Documentary

Directed by
David Petersen

Produced by
Mary Recine, David Petersen

Executive Producer
Sam Pollard, Jannat Gargi, Jody Allen, Ruth Johnston, Rocky Collins

2022 | English | USA

Academy Award®-nominated director David Petersen tells the inspiring story of LIFT, an afterschool ballet program for housing-insecure youth in New York City. Bronx-born dancer and choreographer Steven Melendez leads the program, helping his students make the aristocratic art form their own while reckoning with his own traumatic childhood in a shelter. Shot over an impressive ten-year span and supported by principal advisor Misty Copeland, LIFT tracks the triumphs and trials of the children who grew up attending the program, capturing in real time how Melendez’s support and mentorship empowers them to navigate their difficult home circumstances and find their own voices through dance.

Scheduled to attend: Director David Petersen, Special Advisor Misty Copeland, Subject Steven Melendez, Producer Mary Recine, Executive Producer Jannat Gargi