How to Dance in Ohio

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    How to Dance in Ohio

    Directed by

    USA

    2015

    88 min

    • English

    Documentary

    Making friends, working with others, and generally having a meaningful social life can be hard for anyone. For the half a million young people on the autism spectrum who will be entering the adult world over the next 10 years, these everyday challenges are sources of intense anxiety and fear. In Columbus, Ohio, a group of autistic teenagers and young adults role-play this transition by going through the deceptively complex social interactions of preparing for a spring formal. Focusing on several young women as they go through an iconic American rite of passage, we are given intimate access to people who are often unable to share their experiences with others. With humor and heartbreak, How to Dance in Ohio shows the daily courage of people facing their fears and opening themselves to the pain, worry, and joy of the social world.

    Festivals

    Credits

    Cast
    Marideth Bridges
    Jessica Sullivan
    Caroline McKenzie
    Cinematography
    Laela Kilbourn
    Editing
    Toby Shimin
    Joy E. Reed
    Music
    Bryan Senti

    Director's Statement

    Coming of age is complicated for everybody, whether you're going to your first dance, or your first date, or simply trying to make a new friend. I think the film is really about our need to grow, connect and belong. The young adults in "How to Dance in Ohio" struggle deeply with the challenges around social connection. The film follows them as they persevere, and is a testament to their resilience.

    Sales
    THE FILM SALES COMPANY
    Production
    GIDALYA PICTURES
    Production
    BLUMHOUSE PRODUCTIONS

    Press

    A touching, gentle-hearted look at teenagers on the autistic spectrum... a refreshingly upbeat, even cheerful look at people and their families coping with the condition.

    Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter

    Alexandra Shiva

    Alexandra Shiva

    USA

    Alexandra Shiva is an award-winning filmmaker with over 15 years of experience crafting intimate, character-driven cinema vérité documentaries. Her previous films include the Peabody Award winner HOW TO DANCE IN OHIO, which premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and aired on HBO; STAGEDOOR (Sundance Channel, 2006 SXSW Film Festival); BOMBAY EUNUCH (best documentary at New York Lesbian and Gay Film Festival and Special Jury Award at the Florida Film Festival, 2001). THIS IS HOME (2018) won the Audience Award: World Cinema Documentary at Sundance Film Festival.

    Selected Filmography