The White World: An Appeal

Marit Rawley

As some readers of Vessel may know, I have spent the last several months working on a project with documentary filmmaker and multiple Emmy-winner, Dale Sonnenberg and his protégé, Marit Rawley.

Dale had been seeking an apprentice for years. He was especially interested in working with someone with autism, who could use film as a means of creative expression and communication.

Enter Marit, a young woman with autism and a passion for film. Through a mutual friend, Polly Arango, Dale and Marit meet and agree to a common goal: make ten films together, no matter how long it takes.

Over the past five years, Marit and Dale have met every Tuesday at one o’clock, completing two short films and laying the groundwork for Marit’s “self documentary” about life with autism. Her current project, The White World, is her most ambitious to date. The White World centers on a young dancer named Clara, who survives an attack and must now choose the world of the living or limbo, where she encounters Death and sees her life played out before her. This film mirrors Marit’s own journey as a young woman with autism, dancing between the world within her mind and the outside world in which she lives.

This project is about more than making a film. It’s about giving Marit a means of expressing herself that isn’t limited to language, tone of voice, facial expression and other conventions of social interaction.

Veteran actor and dancer Suzenne Seradwyn has put in many hours as co-producer, acting coach, and the character Miss Shelly. Fans of Albuquerque’s theatre scene will recognize Alicia Lueras Maldonado as The Instructor and James Chavez as Death. Read all about the team, see photos from our rehearsals and find out more about the project on The White World blog at

This project has been a communal labor of love, and thanks to a push from–a funding platform for creative projects–we are ready to take The White World to the next step. We have raised nearly 40% of our $5,385 goal and are now reaching out to our community to push us over the top before our November 5 deadline. Kickstarter is all-or-nothing. If we do not reach our goal by November 5, we will not have access to any of the pledged funds.

The White World team would deeply appreciate any support you could provide.

Please click on the link below to read about the project, watch our promotional video, and make a pledge.

Then help spread the word by posting a link to Marit’s Kickstarter project on your Facebook page, perhaps with a note letting folks know you pledged and encouraging them to do the same.

Thank you for helping to bring Marit’s vision to the screen.

Published in: on October 20, 2011 at 12:34 pm  Leave a Comment  

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