SONATA

Los Angeles, California | Film Short

Drama, Family

Rebekah Chun

1 Campaigns | California, United States

21 days :12 hrs :29 mins

Until Deadline

155 supporters | followers

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$14,535

Goal: $15,000 for production

Korean-American sisters and classical musicians, Viv and Gia Song, must grapple with diverging ambitions amidst the strain of caring for their ailing mother, May.

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
  • Updates
  • The Team
  • Community

Mission Statement

“Sonata” is a love letter to our families, the ones who relentlessly challenge and champion us in our ambitions. Our team of USC post-grads and students hopes you feel the same way we do about this story – that music has the power to transcend both words and time.

The Story

Writer's Statement:

My friend told me a story once about her and her father's relationship. Whenever they argued and were finally ready to apologize, instead of saying, “I’m sorry, and I love you,” they would play their half of a duet they both knew by heart.

Poster Design Inspo: Omori


Sonata is a musically driven, coming-of-age narrative that focuses on familial hardships.

Our story starts with young VIV (11) and GIA (9), struggling to practice a piano and violin duet. As they continue blaming each other, their mother, MAY, reminds them about the importance of harmony.



NINE YEARS LATER, Viv and Gia are competing for admission into a top music conservatory, causing a rift between the sisters, as they grapple with May's declining health. While Gia continues to practice vigorously, Viv realizes this musical path may not be right for her.


As May’s illness worsens, Viv and Gia are confronted with their resentment towards each other. However, the sisters’ love for May ultimately overcomes their anger, enabling them to finally perform that same duet from their childhood together as their mother watches on. Serene. Fulfilled. Proud…



Director's Statement

During Fall of 2023, we pitched "Sonata" as a 480 senior thesis film at the USC School of Cinematic Arts. While we spent many late nights preparing our pitch, an undeniable bond began to form for our team and this story. Ultimately, the script had producing challenges that called for a larger budget and longer timeline - and we didn't make it through. 


Despite the setback, this story had latched onto all of us like superglue. Our producer, Rebekah, said Gia and Viv were just like her and her sister – the constant battle between responsibility and ambition being a core part of who they both are. Our writer, Josh, said May acted as a reflection of how his father's illness affected their family dynamics. And as a violinist who debated for months between film and music school, coalescing my two passions as a musically-driven filmmaker reminds me of Viv’s journey.


We knew we couldn’t just lay this script to rest. Ultimately, we want to tell this story because it's a reminder that despite everything, there is always room for forgiveness, hope, and love.


So, after the results...

we decided to come back.



At the heart of our story is a family learning to forgive, to hope, and to love again. We'd like to introduce you to the Song family...


Viv Song: Viv is the 언니 (older sister) of the family. She's the Piano. Composed. Tender-hearted. Responsible. As her mother’s health declines, she delays her childhood aspirations of becoming a classical pianist in order to uphold her familial duties. While taking community college classes, Viv must decide if she’s going to apply to conservatory and pursue the path she’s always dreamt about.


Gia Song: Gia is the 동생 (younger sister) of the family. She's the Violin. Driven. Headstrong. Perfectionist. As a senior in high school, she struggles with knowing how to help Viv take care of May. Gia’s violin is her source of comfort, as she dreams of getting into a top conservatory and pursuing music like her mother.


May Song: May is the 엄마 (mother) of the family. Discerning. Wistful. Weary. She's a former music teacher who loves her daughters more than anything. After developing dementia, her life goal has become to make her daughters successful musicians. More than that though, she wants them to have a happy relationship.



Sonata's visuals will help take us through each of the characters' arcs as they learn to grow as a family. We want our film's world to feel intimate, vulnerable, and engaging. Below, you can see what we want that world to look like and how we'll be bringing it to life.




Of course, we can only make that world a reality with the proper resources. Below, you can see a breakdown of how we'll be allocating the money from this campaign into making Sonata the best it can possibly be.



Anything we raise past $15,000 will allow us to hit the following STRETCH GOALS:

  • If we raise 16k, we can help send "Sonata" on a film festival run.
  • If we raise 17k, we can increase the production scale for locations and set operations.
  • If we raise 18k, we can help finish Sonata strong with an increased post-production budget for coloring and sound.




Our team is like an orchestra, comprised of several talented individuals who are currently studying or have recently graduated from USC's School of Cinematic Arts, all coming together to breathe life into Sonata's story. Every member is bringing years of experience and knowledge to the team, each with their own part to play in making this film as best as it can be. We are lucky to have a team of such passionate and talented filmmakers to bring Sonata to life.



WHY YOU?

Films like Sonata are often only made possible by the help of potential supporters like you. Our team strongly believes that the Song’s family story is worth telling. 


As a diverse team of filmmakers, we strive to put authentic representations of underrepresented families onto the big screen. We are dedicated to capturing the nuances of a Korean-American family with our characters, and staying honest to our portrayal of sisterhood, motherhood, and the complex relationships we have with the people who love us most. We recognize that such authentic representations have the power to resonate and inspire. You can be a part of Sonata’s impact on the type of stories told in our industry. The power is in your hands.



We absolutely cannot bring the music of Sonata to life without your support. Just like the Song family, the team behind Sonata is a family of its own, joining our talents to create something bigger than all of us.


Every bit of support will go a long way in helping us tell this story. By donating, sharing our posts on social media, telling your friends about our film, and engaging with our community, you will bring us one step closer to making this story a reality. If you believe in this story as much as we do, we urge you to become part of the Sonata family today!


Follow our Seed & Spark Page & Socials:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sonatatheshortfilm/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/people/Sonata-The-Short-Film/61556555386529/

Wishlist

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

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Camera + Lighting Equipment

Costs $2,000

We believe in doing this heartfelt story justice with its visuals. In order to capture the intimacy of the story, we need the right gear!

Production Design, Costumes & Makeup

Costs $1,200

Capturing a Korean American home for our characters is essential to our story, and we need your help to make it feel authentic and alive.

Music & Composing

Costs $1,200

A story about a duet would be nothing without a strong score. We're investing heavily into composing beautiful music and recording it live.

Locations

Costs $3,000

We need the right locations to bring this story to life. Help us find the world of Sonata!

Set Operations

Costs $6,050

A well-run set of 6 days requires catering & crafty, transportation, permits, and a studio teacher for actors who are minors.

Post Production & Festivals

Costs $700

This will cover all the essentials of our editing and coloring needs, as well as our ability to submit to festivals.

Production Sound & Mixing

Costs $850

In order to bring the sounds of the instruments and worlds to life, we need access to professional recording and mixing studios!

About This Team

Read more about our amazing team here!

Current Team

Supporters

Followers

Incentives