Harana (formerly "A Song for Myself")

Los Angeles, California | Film Short

Drama, Music

Marie Jamora

1 Campaigns | California, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $33,436 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

269 supporters | followers

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The newest work by Marie Jamora, A SONG FOR MYSELF is a bittersweet short film about a Filipina cover band singer struggling to create her own music while battling the heartache of immigration in the early 1990s. Created as part of the AFI Directing Workshop for Women.

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About The Project

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Mission Statement

Our goal is to bring Filipino stories to mainstream media. We will showcase Filipino and Fil-Am talent, in front of and behind the camera. We are proud to be a part of AFI's DWW, which is committed to increasing the number of female directors working in Hollywood. Your support will greatly help!

The Story

Thank you so much to everyone who got us to 100%!! We're so grateful for your contributions to our film.



A SONG FOR MYSELF is a short film set in Las Vegas, 1995 and tells the story of a Filipina cover-band singer pursuing her dreams at the expense of family. Maya is an overseas worker singing in a Filipino cover band at a Las Vegas hotel lounge, wrestling between becoming a pop-culture photocopy for an unlistening audience and creating her own original music.  

I was born in Manila and immigrated to Los Angeles five years ago to pursue my dreams, but I had to leave the life I built back home.

But my experience is not unique. In fact, the biggest export of the Philippines is its PEOPLE. The Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) living abroad make up 11% of the total Philippine population worldwide. These laborers earn money working in foreign countries to send back to their families, and in many cases, cannot return home for years at a time.

Several films have been made about the OFW experience and most people know about the nurses and domestic workers, but a lesser-known labor force is our ENTERTAINERS--the musicians and singers you see in cruise ships, theme parks, and pretty much any hotel lounge around the world. Theirs is what inspired the story of A Song For Myself. 

This film is a celebration of the OFWs and an acknowledgment of their sacrifice in the pursuit of dreams.

While the characters are immigrants, this is not just an immigrant story. It is that of a fledgling band and the search for one’s voice, as well as finding connection in a foreign land. It is about the pains of loneliness that serve as a crucible for creativity and self-expression. 

As a musician and immigrant myself, I feel a strong connection to this material. This film is for the singers, songwriters, musicians, and artists living abroad in search of their voice and fighting to be heard.


The American Film Insititute's Directing Workshop for Women (DWW) is a prestigious 40-year old program committed to educating and mentoring female filmmakers to increase the number of women working professionally as directors and showrunners in film and television.

DWW has alumni such as Maya Angelou, Ellen Burstyn, Cicely Tyson, Tricia Brock (The Deuce, The Walking Dead, Mozart in the Jungle), Hanelle M. Culpepper (Star Trek: Discovery, The Flash, Empire), Jennifer Getzinger (How To Get Away With Murder, Outlander, Jessica Jones), and Lesli Linka Glatter (Mad Men, The West Wing, Homeland).

Many of the films made through this program go on to premiere at world-class film festivals, and several projects in recent years have been greenlit and financed by major studios as feature-length productions or television series, such as Pippa Bianco’s (Class of 2015) Cannes award-winning DWW short Share, which became a full-length feature film that premiered at Sundance 2019, winning the Special Jury Award for Acting and Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award. Sarah Gertrude Shapiro (Class of 2013)’s SXSW-winning DWW short film Sequin Raze ended up becoming the Emmy award-nominated drama TV series, unREAL. Four participants from the Class of 2018 have already gone to direct episodes of television: Milena Govich (Chicago Med, Chicago Fire), Tiffany Johnson (Boomerang, Dear White People), Nancy Meija (Vida) and Gandja Montiero (Vida). DWW alumna Dime Davis was recently tapped to helm the pilot of Lena Waithe and Halle Berry’s BET series Boomerang.


Marie Jamora’s first feature, What Isn't There, premiered at the Slamdance Film Festival and her latest film, Flip the Record, won the Grand Jury Awards for Best Narrative Short at Urbanworld and the St. Louis International Film Festival. Currently an executive producer and director of Family Style, an Asian food series with Warner Bros./Stage 13, Jamora was named one of “Five Visionary Asian-American Female Filmmakers” in Kore Magazine's 'New Hollywood' issue.

She began her career directing music videos during the golden age of the Philippine rock scene. Jamora's stories often explore the rhythms of youth through music. She recently immigrated to the U.S. and is now based in Los Angeles.
Jamora is the first Filipina director to be accepted to the prestigious AFI Directing Workshop for Women, a 40-year old program that catapults directors to the next level of their careers and only accepts 8 women per year.


To bring this story to life, I have to raise all the funding for this short film. Here is where your money will go...



ANY AMOUNT helps and please SHARE this campaign, especially with anyone you know who has an OFW in your family.


And don't forget, your donation may be


The American Film Institute is a 501(c)(3) organization which means your donation is tax-deductible under the fullest extent of the law. (Contact your tax accountant for more information on tax-deductibility.)

Maraming salamat!



Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Music Licensing

Costs $5,000

Our film features a cover band & licensing the pop tunes that they will perform is super expensive!

Hotel Lounge

Costs $4,000

The '90s Las Vegas hotel that the band will perform in night after night.


Costs $2,000

We'll need insurance for all locations and rental equipment. Gotta cover our butts!

Set Design and Wardrobe

Costs $2,500

We are so excited to recreate the 1990s for you guys! Imagine the hair, make-up, costumes, & props!

Band Rehearsal Space

Costs $1,500

Every band needs a space to practice, right? We have a scene where the band preps for their gig.

Audio Production

Costs $1,500

To rearrange & re-record the hit songs that Maya's band will perform onscreen. Plus a new song too!

Picture Vehicles

Costs $1,500

We need to rent two vehicles from the 1990s -- One classic car & one station wagon.

Camera & Lenses

Costs $3,500

Naturally, we need a camera to shoot our movie :P


Costs $3,000

We're a Pinoy set, you know how important FOOD is to us. ;) We want to feed our cast & crew right.

Crew Kit Fees

Costs $2,000

Most of our crew will be working for free, but we'd like to pay them for their specialty tools.


Costs $2,500

Our final phase: Editing, Color correction, Re-recording mix, Subtitling, hard drives, etc.

Grip and Lighting

Costs $1,000

It's Vegas, baby! We need lights to make the band shine.

About This Team

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