Tajik alum's film selected for PovertyCure International Film Festival

Radio-Television Department alumn Khushnuda Shukurova's documentary film, “Love Life Regardless,” was selected for the PovertyCure International Film Festival in New York City.

The biographical documentary focused on the daily life of a single mother in Shukurova’s home country, Tajikistan.

Shukurova (2010), who lives in New York City, headed back home with a camera and a backpack to tell the story of a woman who is a nurse, farmer and devoted single mother of eight.

Being a successful woman in a male-dominated country is impressive, Shukurova said. Some may think the women are poor, but Shukurova realized through the documentary process that living in a rural village can be very rich.

“I learned that you don’t have to have millions of dollars to be happy as long as your family is around,” Shukurova said.

Shukurova found villagers reluctant to speak with her on-camera. “They started talking to me as if I was a foreigner and trying to make me feel at home,” she said, “but they did not expect me to be a Tajik.”

The most memorable part of the filming process was hearing the woman sing while working. “There's one song I included in the film that touches my heart and makes me cry when I listen to it,” she said. “I could feel what she was going through by listening to that song.”

Shukurova credits her prior broadcast and production classes from the J-School as a huge help. She enjoyed the documentary classes the most, and received guidance and encouragement from professors Ray Ekness and Denise Dowling, as well as from adjunct professor Gita Saedi Kiely.

“When I came to the J-School I didn’t know how to operate a camera. I wanted to challenge myself,” she said. “[The school] gave me basic knowledge so I could elaborate more on my skills.”

Shukurova currently lives in New York City and is a production assistant at HowCast Media.

- posted 01/14/14 -