About this project
GREAT NEWS!!! Thanks to our very generous backers, we have reached our goal and WILL be funded. But that doesn't mean you can't still pledge. Donations will be accepted through Friday, July 16, and will go towards necessary Post Production expenses.
The feature documentary ESCARAMUZA: RIDING FROM THE HEART tells the story of Escaramuza Charra Las Azaleas, a team of first-generation Mexican American horsewomen on a two-year journey to represent California and the United States at the National Charro Championships in Mexico.
America’s original rodeo, rooted in the cattle culture of Colonial Mexico, Charreada blends the equestrian skills, handcrafted tack, elegant costumes, music, and food of that rich heritage into a living folk tradition. Between the men’s riding and roping contests, the female escaramuzas charras perform their perilous, precision horse ballets, bending and twisting their galloping reining horses around each other in intricate, synchronized patterns.
For the eight young members of Las Azaleas, “escaramuza”—skirmish—describes not only the danger and fierceness of competition, but the tug of war between New World modernity and freedom versus the Old World traditions and values embodied in their Charrería culture, where “to be Charro is to be Mexican.”
Confronting obstacles both known and unforeseen on their path from California to Mexico, their sometimes difficult choices demonstrate the values of goal-setting, teamwork, personal responsibility and sacrifice, grace under pressure, and strong family ties—making Las Azaleas inspiring role models in a world where Latina female athletes are few and far between.
At home, as California and U.S. champions, Las Azaleas work hard to pass on their inherited tradition and values to the next generation—their sons and daughters, little brothers and little sisters. In Mexico, competing against the very best of the best, they must come to terms with their own complicated relationship to the culture they love.
WHERE WE ARE & WHERE WE’RE GOING:
We began making ESCARAMUZA in May of 2008. We’ve gotten ourselves through two years of shooting, including a big trip to Mexico, with just a little help from one small grant. Shooting is finished, and we’re now in the midst of editing the movie from the more than 250 hours of material we’ve collected. The teaser you see above gives a small hint of our treasures.
But in this Post Production phase, there are some hard expenses that there’s just no avoiding, and that’s where Kickstarter comes in.
Funds raised on Kickstarter will go towards:
License fees for video footage and music
Original score composition
DVD authoring & replication
Outreach and distribution expenses
If you’re thinking this sounds like way more than the goal of $10,000 we’ve set, you would be right. But since we won’t get ANYTHING if we don’t reach our target amount, we’re nervous about setting the bar too high. That doesn’t mean you can’t keep on giving once we’ve reached the goal. Believe us, we will certainly need it.
DVDs, cool Wrangler jeans, rodeo and racetrack days--we’ve got some great rewards for you. Check them out to the right. Thanks especially to the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club for the DEL MAR SPECIAL.
And the good news is that your donations will be partially tax deductible.
ESCARAMUZA is a fiscally-sponsored project of the International Documentary Association (IDA), a 501(c)(3) non-profit membership organization. Contributions made on behalf of ESCARAMUZA are payable to IDA and are tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law.
So please contribute in any way you can, and use your own networks to help us spread the word. We’ll do our part by making a movie we can all be proud of.
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