You will be redirected back to your article in seconds
Back to IndieWire

‘Revolution Cuba: Stories of Art & Change’ Looks to Use Short Films to Illuminate the Nation’s Artists

'Revolution Cuba: Stories of Art & Change' Looks to Use Short Films to Illuminate the Nation's Artists

Here’s your daily dose of an indie film, web series, TV pilot, what-have-you in progress — at the end of the week, you’ll have the chance to vote for your favorite.

In the meantime: Is this a project you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments.

Revolution Cuba: Stories of Art & Change

Logline: “Art for the people” collides with market forces in six short portraits of artists at the heart of an evolving nation.

Elevator Pitch: 
Rum. Jazz. Vintage Cars. We think we know Cuba. We hear about shortages, lack of opportunities, expected regime change, refugees and lucrative business deals. Lost is the remarkable debate where revolutionary ideals face off against the market’s seduction. In Cuba, where 98% of the people are literate, have healthcare, a home, and free education, artists are not fringe. They are vanguard and they are in a quandry. Opportunity vs. free expression vs. socialism. How will they choose? Or can they have it all? “(R)evolution Cuba” brings you six short film stories of artists at the heart of an evolving nation.

Production Team:
We, Marcia Jarmel & Ken Schneider, are PatchWorks Films. For more than 20 years we have created award-winning documentaries exploring contemporary social issues through intimate character stories, building innovative partnerships for strategic use with organizations and educators. Our films have broadcast worldwide and shown at museums, libraries, schools, universities, community centers, conferences, and film festivals. Our previous documentary features include: “The Return of Sarah’s Daughters,” “Born in the USA,” “Speaking in Tongues,” and “Havana Curveball.” “(R)evolution Cuba” is PatchWorks 8th project.

Ken Schneider (director/producer/editor) is a Peabody-winning producer who believes in the power of documentaries to move people. His passions are stories of war and peace, human rights, artists’ lives, and Cuba. In addition to his feature and short work for PatchWorks, Ken has edited over 35 feature length documentaries for PBS, HBO, Al-Jazeera, and others. Films he edited have been nominated for an Oscar and multiple Emmys, and won prime-time and documentary Emmys, a Columbia-Dupont, two Peabodys, an Indie Spirit award and top awards at the Sundance Film Festival.

In addition to her PatchWorks work, Marcia Jarmel (co-director/producer/writer) was consulting producer on HBO’s Emmy-nominated “50 Children,” consultant to Academy Award nominee “Last Day of Freedom,” and IFP Mentor to “The Last Season.” Other credits include co-editing the Academy-award nominee,”For Better or For Worse,” and assistant producing the Academy Award nominees, “Berkeley in the Sixties” and “Freedom on My Mind.” She is also an impact consultant for documentary filmmakers.

In Cuba we work with a fabulous experienced crew that includes Cuba’s pre-eminent documentary cinematographer, Roberto Chile (Fidel Castro’s personal cameraman), and one of Cuba’s hottest jazz pianists, Harold López-Nussa, who is composing music for the series.

About the Film:
A family story originally brought us to Cuba to make “Havana Curveball.” When we returned to share that film last winter on the very day that Castro and Obama announced the historic diplomatic opening, and again in the spring to tour college campuses on a celebrity tour, we found a door opening to real friendships with artists in Cuba’s vanguard. They were deeply proud of their values, artistic achievements, way of life. They spoke of new opportunities, change—and self-determination. No where in our media are we hearing stories like theirs. We are committed to bridging the gap.

Current Status: Fundraising, pre-production. We expect to complete the first of the short films this spring with the resources from our crowdfunding efforts.

Got a project that you’d like to be featured? Submit to Project of the Day!

This Article is related to: Filmmaker Toolkit and tagged


Kevin L. Mogg

This is a time for a movie like this. History is being made.



paul spencer

ok, i’m hooked already and look forward to seeing this gem!

Ariel Sultan

whoops misspelled forward :P. But I am excited to see how it comes together!

Ariel Sultan

Looking forawrd to seeing this film, especially after visiting Cuba so recently.

Tim Marozick

Since few people in the U.S. actually travel outside our borders, every film about our new "friend", Cuba helps give some meaning to the new status of our relationship with them. Looking forward to watching this. Best of luck with it.

Henry Loubet

I know given my experience with them this movie like Havana curveball will be superb haven’t seen the trailer and been at the Apple Valley film Festival but I received a prestigious award with them that this movie like Havana curveball will be superb haven’t seen the trailer and been at the Apple Valley film Festival but I received a prestigious reward

Michael Ehrenzweig

A truly independent film by truly independent and accomplished filmmakers. Great insight and sensitive approach, presenting a wonderfully realistic view of Cuban artists to US audiences.

Gail Silva

From what I have seen so far, these two will do a terrific job with this series.


I am excited to witness what kind of films these might turn into! Its such a singular subject. I think hopefully these films can flow into a new vein of diplomacy between these two nations and build a sustaining and illuminating dialogue.

Erin Palmquist

Ken and Marcia are wonderful filmmakers telling important stories. I very much look forward to seeing this series!

Alison Raleigh

I’m so curious to see the stories Patchwork Films brings to the screen with this inspired project. What a fascinating moment to document the perspectives of Cuban artists on an extraordinary juncture in their society’s history–talk about being in the perfect place at the perfect time! Ken and Marcia do beautiful work; I’m looking forward to this film.

Linda Feldman

Patchwork Films has produced an impressive volume of work and I believe this film will be a vital introduction to Cuba and its culture at a time when relations with the US appear to be improving. I’m looking forward to seeing this film!

Amy Leonard

Can’t wait to see the stories!

Deborah Kwan

I’m excited to see more stories about Cuba from Ken, Marcia and PatchWorks Films.

Shirley Thompson

LOVED Ken and Marcia’s Cuba doc Havana Curveball. Very excited to see this new series. Yes!

Delnaz Abadi

To witness Cuba changing through the perspective of artists is a real treat. Thanks for documenting this piece of history as it is unfolding.

Rachel Jutkowitz

Ken and Marcia are the two most persistent film makers I know. They shine the light in places many don’t think to look!

Brenda Lhormer

What an inspired project, and Ken and Marcia are the talented filmmakers to bring this to life. We need to hear and share these artists’ stories, and we are thrilled to back Revolution Cuba in any way we possibly can.

Erica Jordan

I was very moved by Ken and Marcia’s last film "Havana Curveball." I believe they will create stories about Cuba and its rich tapestry of art and change, with great respect and sensitivity. I can’t wait to see their new work.

Maria Mealla

I had so much fun watching this crowd funding campaign’s updates and progress. This is going to be a wonderful film and I can’t wait to see it!


Cuba is exciting – it is rich in culture and I’m looking forward to hearing stories about the amazing , creative and artistic people of Cuba

Susan Lazarus

There is so much creativity in Cuba and I look forward to hearing from the Cuban perspective. It’s a complicated situation, and it will be fun to have a window on their lives and art at this historic moment.

Gregg Butensky

This is an important film project at an opportune time – very much looking forward to seeing it come to fruition.

Inés Betancourt

The quality of PatchWorks films is outstanding! I look forward to seeing Revolution Cuba. I am overjoyed that they will continue to bring us Cuban stories

Tristan Seifer

I feel so thrilled to have been given a glimpse of Patchwork Film’s latest project. Cuba is a mystery to many of us and we’ve been cheated of their artists for too long. Looking forward to seeing these films when they’re finished.

Susan Sauer Sloan

Who better to document this pivotal time in Cuban history than the talented and committed Patchwork Films-? I support their endeavors; I hope you will, too!

Estelle Schneider

Given that no one from outside Cuba can predict how change will unfold, or not, I have confidence that Ken, Marcia, Patchwork and their team will produce films that will guarantee the artists speak for themselves and not any external filters. Let Cuba be Cuba, on the screen!

Stamatis Marinos

Ken and Marcia do consistently excellent work, and I’m very excited to see what they’ll make of the changes now and soon to be happening in Cuba.

June Safran

After 22 years of working with the Jews of Cuba, I am very familiar with the culture of Cuba and so happy that Patchwork Films is bringing this culture to the American public, particularly during this time of great change.

margie schlenoff

Having just returned from Cuba, I support the stance and effort of these filmmakers. The Cuban people have an indomitable spirit despite their lack of material resources and access to information….this film will bring their voices into focus for more of us to share.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *