“Cold Sweat” is a chilling coming-of-age anthology series following tween protagonists as they overcome supernatural hurdles in order to make it to high school in one piece. – from “Cold Sweat” website
1.Tell our readers about yourself.
Wi‑Moto Nyoka: I’m a writer, performer and transmedia artist. I make horror and sci-fi works for stage and film.
2. Explain how you got into being an artist.
I was cast as Alice in my kindergarten production of Alice In Wonderland. I’ve been an artist ever since.
3. What is the concept of the anthology series “Cold Sweat”?
The series is a response to my time working in arts education for middle school grades. I wanted to make something that celebrated the resilience, creativity and quirkiness of the students that I’ve worked with over the years. Each episode is made in partnership with youth performing arts organizations to provide opportunities for young actors of color. Once post production is completed it is followed by a screening tour where we hold interactive workshops that explore the role of justice in the episode. The workshops can be theater‑based or film‑based depending on the group(s) we’re working with. The whole project is a way of celebrated youth advocacy through storytelling.
4. What are the challenges of producing a series?
Funding. That’s probably pretty obvious but securing continuous fiscal support is the kind of work that’s usually handled by a team of people. When you’re an indie filmmaker it’s just you sometimes and that can be overwhelming and discouraging. It’s such a huge undertaking to do just one episode and then you think, “How am I going to do this again?” It involves applying your creative thinking to strategizing for financial stability which can be an awkward shift for someone who just wants to tell stories.
5. Tell us about your team and the importance of teamwork in producing a project.
I’m partnering with some pretty incredible people on this project. I am still humbled and amazed that they said yes. Cold Sweat is a female‑driven project and it’s been an amazing experience to make work with such incredible women such as: Viktoria King of CYNE 59 Productions, Sandra Manzanares, Adele Overby of Music Theater Factory, Sadah Espii Proctor of Girl Icon and DJ Cassieopia. As for the importance of teamwork, filmmaking and theater are collaborative mediums and no one does it alone. Forming a strong collective is essential to my work and Support Our #creatives, as well as other communities like yours, are key to building sustainability.
6. What is the current status of principal photography of “Cold Sweat” and plans for the future?
Right now I’m partnering with public libraries and non‑profits that focus in youth advocacy and youth filmmaking in NYC. The screening tour is slowly taking shape and will consist of sharing the first chapter, “Wham!” and incorporating an interactive workshop. I’m also developing the second chapter at the Crosstown Arts summer residency in Memphis, TN. The community in Memphis is supportive and Crosstown Arts is an incredible facility. I’m hoping that the partnerships I build here will allow for the second chapter to be produced and shot in Memphis.
7. What is your plan for publicizing and distributing the series?
My main focus at the moment is setting up the screening tour in NYC and getting things going for the second chapter. I’d like to have a similar screening tour in Memphis of both the first and second chapter and be able bring that work back to NYC.
8. Is there anything else you would like to say?
If you’re interested in hosting a screening and workshop at your organization, community center, library or church please feel free to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
9. How can people get in touch with you?
I can be reached on Instagram at @duskyprojects, and for updates on the series please follow us at @ColdSweatNow
The first chapter of the “Cold Sweat” anthology is called “Wham!”
“Wham!”, the story of a nefarious soft drink that tries to take over a school, is chapter one in our series. Our heroes, Aquila and Sadiquah, are two of the best students at 362 MLK Middle School. But when the school begins to break out into mysterious rage episodes, the uninfected will have to find the courage to save their school. And their future. – from “Cold Sweat” website
We have read about the motivation behind “Cold Sweat”. Wi-Moto supports students in the arts. She works to get community input for the story lines. Looking forward to the additional episodes of the anthology.
To my readers, please provide feedback or questions in the Comments. I would really enjoy hearing from you. And let me know if there are any topics you would like me to cover.
Disclaimer: The author is not being financially compensated by Wi-Moto Nyoka for this post.
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Originally published June 10, 2019. Updated August 19, 2020 to adjust category assignments.