We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicole Manoochehri and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Nicole, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
From a very young age, I had a deep desire to tell stories. As an extremly shy child, that need was met by dancing on stage. At home, I would direct my siblings in fairytale plays where we all played multiple roles and had many costume changes. I’ve always had a notebook that I would jot down poems, silly thoughts, and short stories. I was homeschooled and I feel thankful to have had the time and chance to explore all of my interests! As I got older I switched my main focus of dancing to acting and later to filmmaking. I feel like I’m still trying to find my niche. One of my favorite books The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron quotes “Leap, and the net will appear.” I’m my best when I’m creative in some way. In my downtime, I always have some kind of arts and crafts project going. For the last couple of years, I’ve been really into botanical dyeing. It’s something that has taught me to let go of perfectionism. As the end result is usually not expected but beautiful and unique no matter what. I founded Los Angeles Dance Shorts Film Festival in 2017. Running a film fest during a pandemic has been an interesting experience. Olivia Mia Orozco (Co-Director as of 2019) and I have been creatively working on ways to make the most of the circumstances. We have put a lot of work into our November 13-15 2020 virtual fest and we are so thrilled and proud to share the 34 amazing films that had been selected! I recently directed a short dance film with some wonderful people. I love combining all of my passions and I’m excited to share the film when it’s finished! It felt so great to be back on set after a personal hiatus.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m currently focusing on my film festival. We curate and screen dance films from around the world! Our mission is “Gathering creators and lovers of screendance in one place to celebrate dance film and inspire each other.” The festival is normally held at this great location called Mimoda Studio located in Mid-City. They have a cafe in the front (Paper or Plastik Cafe) and a multipurpose space in the back. The idea was to create an atmosphere where you can grab a drink and watch amazing dance films and simply enjoy the company of others. Our 4th annual Film Festival will take place virtually November 13th-15th due to COVID-19. I’m excited to temporarily move to a virtual space as we can potentially reach a larger audience. We will be holding a Filmmaker Q&A session via Zoom as well and that opens the door for more international filmmakers to participate which is exciting!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There is just so much to do here (Pre-COVID)! Each neighborhood has its things to see and do. My family and I would for sure take you to DTLA on one of the days. We would start with the Flower District! Grab a coffee and splash around in the fountain at Grand Park, have lunch at Ramen Hood located at Grand Central Market. Followed by dessert either at Donut Friend or Devine Dips Ice Creme (three amazing vegan spots) either go to The Broad or explore The Last Bookstore and end the day at Angel City Brewery for a tour and great people watching. We would get some hiking, beach time, and an evening sightseeing drive of the whole city in as well!

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Shoutout to all the people that I know (past and present) who embrace their creativity! It’s such an inspiration. My parents for encouraging me and a huge shoutout to my husband Joubin for his unwavering support!

Website: Personal: www.nicolemanoo.com Film Festival: www.ladanceshortsfilmfest.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ladanceshortsfilmfest/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ladanceshortsfilmfest
Other: Attend free vitual film fest: https://www.ladanceshortsfilmfest.com/attend

Image Credits
Mo Summers, Victoria Schiafino, Joubin Manoochehri

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