Exclusive: Interview with Adrean Mangiardi

*Sean Forbes is currently hosting a Pledge Music campaign to help him attend K-12 high schools across the country and share his story of overcoming obstacles and achieving his goals, and inspiring over 20,000 kids in the process. Pledgemusic.com is a crowd-source funding website that focuses solely on bands and music. This past winter Sean and crew went out on a five week tour across the northeast and midwest, attending 20 K-12 schools and spoke to over 10,000 students. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive and we’re looking to do that again. Some of the schools we attended, the students have never met a Deaf individual before, so we were able to expose a whole new culture and community to some of these students. You can learn more about the Pledge Music campaign and see some of the awesome rewards for pledging here: www.pledgemusic.com/projects/seanforbes Those that pledge will also be able to see an exclusive NEW unreleased music video for Sean’s song titled “Watch These Hands”, directed and edited by Adrean Mangiardi, Assistant directed by Mark Levin, and cinematography from Wayne Betts Jr. Sean also released a new music video titled ‘We Interrupt This Program’: 



I’m Adrean Mangiardi from Allentown, PA. I’m the youngest member of a loving and supportive family of 5. I have bilateral cochlear implants, the first I received in 1995 and the second in 2005. I attended RIT to study film and animation (BFA) and pursued my MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). I enjoyed learning new editing tricks and camera angles. Outside of work, I spend time on my art using animal skulls, feathers, fur, and other materials. I also enjoy cooking for friends and family. Last, but not least, I arrange a weekly pick up dodgeball game in my community.

At what point did you realize that you wanted to be a film director for the rest of your life?  

It was when I received a “Chairperson’s Award” from RIT in my last year of college. Out of 200 film students in my class, the chairperson of the School of Film and Animation (SOFA) gave me a respectable award for my senior thesis, which was a short film I shot and edited in Italy for 2 weeks with my father. I came to realize that this was something I wanted to do for the rest of my life. 

In your opinion, what is your best directing performance to date?  

Best directing performance to date would be my most recent ASL music video, “You Brought The Sunshine” by the Clark Sisters for D-PAN. I am very proud of this because finding the Deaf talents for the video was challenging and I spent a month searching for the right group of people who each had a strong background in Gospel music. The talents were from all over the country, some from San Francisco, Michigan, Ohio, and Washington D.C. I had them rehearse together for a couple of days to perfect their movement to the beat of the song. The result was awesome and I’m looking forward to sharing this one-of-a-kind ASL music video with everyone. 

Based on your experiences thus far, what advice would you give to an upcoming director/actor?

For a director, being positive and resourceful is key. Know your vision and communicate it clearly with your team. Develop your problem solving skills in a fast paced environment. Continue learning new tricks and challenge yourself with new ideas. Develop your network of filmmakers, producers, and crew for you to reach out while searching to find help to complete your future projects. Most of all, have fun.
As for actors and actresses, continue developing your skills in improvisation. Learn ways to bring your character to life. Directors are very demanding and it is challenging to perform in a way that brings their visions to life. Be in many films as you will learn different sets of skills along the way. Don’t give up when the others try to discourage you. Follow your dreams and you’ll get there.
What has been your biggest challenge that you have ever experienced?

The biggest challenge that I have ever experienced would be when I teamed with Jules Dameron to shoot “Let’s Mambo” with Sean Forbes and Marlee Matlin. It was by far the biggest production that I have ever worked on, considering that we had over 30 people working under us. It was extremely stressful due to the complicated setup and camera movements, as well as time racing against us as we tried to capture all the shots that we needed. Jules and I worked hard to pull it off and ended up creating a wonderful music video that everybody has enjoyed. 

What are your future plans?

My future plans include directing a few feature films and directing more music videos with full accessibility so that all can enjoy them.



Completely Silly Random Questions:

If you could be any character in fiction, whom would you be?
Al Pacino in Godfather, because people respect him.

What is one thing you could tell us about yourself that others would be shocked to know?
I once ate a bowl chocolate pudding that has pig’s blood in it and I had no idea! Turned out that it’s completely normal in Southern Italy, where I ate the pudding. I asked for the second bowl and I loved it.

You have the choice to live with a gorilla who knows sign language or a dog who sings lullabies, which do you choose?
Gorilla who knows sign language

If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?
Like Superman because he can fly, has super strength, laser eyes, blow frost breath, and xray vision.

Who did you wish you were when you were a kid?
Superman because… he’s Superman! 


My favorite part: The questionnaire concept was originated by French television personality Bernard Pivot on his show Apostrophes, after the Proust Questionnaire.
The ten questions Lipton asks are:

What is your favorite word?
Food

What is your least favorite word? 
moist

What turns you on? 
Pasta alla Carbonara

What turns you off?

selfishness

What sound or noise do you love?
organ piano

What sound or noise do you hate? 
car alarm

What is your favorite curse word?
goddamnit

What profession, other than your own, would you like to attempt?
Forensic Science (Crime Scene Investigator)

What profession would you not like to do?
accounting

If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
Dinner’s ready.

Check out Adrean website! – www.mangiardifilms.com

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