DIRECTOR / PRODUCER / EDITOR
Aldona Watts is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. Her interest in filmmaking began in a remote village in Lithuania, where she met a group of elderly women who were the last to carry on an ancient folk singing tradition. Despite a lack of formal filmmaking training, Aldona dedicated herself to documenting the women's songs and stories. Out of this experience grew her first film, feature documentary Land of Songs (2015). Land of Songs had its World Premiere at the Vilnius International Film Festival and its North American Premiere with the Margaret Mead Film Festival at the Museum of Natural History in NYC, where it received the Filmmaker Award Special Mention. It also received the Audience Award from the Chicago European Union Film Festival and was voted back the following year for an encore screening at the Gene Siskel Film Center.
Aldona’s documentary short Steinbeisser, about an experimental culinary event featuring renowned Bay Area chefs and artists, premiered on The New Yorker in 2017. She is currently producing a feature documentary directed by Jacqueline Castel in collaboration with Sacred Bones and Dais Records about Thee Temple ov Psychick Youth, an international “anti-cult” formed by a group of provocative artists in the 1980s. She is also developing new projects and working as a documentary editor and producer for other Bay Area directors. Her work has been published by The New Yorker, highlighted by Kickstarter and supported by The San Francisco Film Society and the Independent Filmmaker Project, among others.
Since 2011, she has been an organizer at Her Girl Friday, an intersectional feminist collective dedicated to supporting journalists and nonfiction storytellers who identify as women.
Previously, she produced and hosted a punk radio show that broadcast in New York City and Vilnius, Lithuania and ran an after school program and radio station for youth in Queens, New York.
The daughter of a fifth generation San Franciscan and a first generation Lithuanian American, Aldona grew up in San Francisco and now lives in Oakland after spending several years in Brooklyn.