Three Dreams Collide in Kansas City

In 2005, I was destined to meet two Kansas City women. Although I didn’t understand why until 2015.

by Lisa Donato

Lisa Donato, Tracey Stowe, and Ann Scida reunite at the Kansas City Film Festival!
Lisa Donato, Tracey Stowe, and Ann Scida reunite after 10 years.

Ten years ago, we all flew on a whim from separate cities to see Sarah McLachlan play in Minneapolis, MN. As strangers, we sat next to each other. As kindred spirits, we knew every lyric to Sarah’s songs. We even knew the names of her kids and dogs. We got wasted in the streets of MN for hours beyond the concert.

Then I flew home to Denver and they flew home to Kansas City. The energy of my impending friendship with Tracey and Ann was electric. In queer women fashion, we decided that we should take our relationship to the next level. We should all own a business together. The sooner the better.

So I flew to Kansas City with a video camera. We created blueprints for a business venture that would take us out of daily corporate monotony. We would open a restaurant, or Italian deli, or lesbian bar, or all of the above.

Tracey and Ann were insistent that this place have live music. I was most excited to film our meetings and create a documentary out of our creative process. But no matter what, in two years we were going to be successful business owners with a movie to tell our story.

Alas, life took different turns. We got corporate promotions, nieces and nephews, and eventually, new partners.

What I realized from this weekend in Kansas City, is that I had a dream to make films. And they had a dream to play music. 

In 2012, I finally left my lucrative advertising career in pursuit of a dream. I drove to Los Angeles and burned through every last penny in my savings. (I cried. A lot.)

I learned how to write, first AD, produce, be a gaffer, be a gopher, make deals, lose deals, cast, and create a stripboard and script breakdown report. By the end of 2014, I finally wrote and directed my first film – ahem, Sugarhiccup. 

When we got accepted into the Kansas City Film Festival, I messaged Tracey and Ann right away. They were not only going to attend the film screening, but their new band, Holmes Street, was going to play the after party. 

#Life #WTFisSpace

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