Betty Udesen is a pioneer in multi-media reporting that combines still images with field-recorded sounds and interviews. Her work in this burgeoning field has been recognized with first place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for the past two years, and she is in demand as a university and workshop lecturer on the art of multi-media storytelling. Udesen, working both for The Seattle Times and as an independent producer, has done projects in Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Central and South America, and Israel as well as in her hometown of Seattle; work that showcases a wide-ranging technique, and ability to portray complex situations with sensitivity and depth.
Among her many awards, she received a prestigious Lowell Thomas
Gold and a
First Place from the National
Association of Black Journalists for her work on the AIDS
pandemic in Africa.
Singer, composer & writer Emily Greenleaf lived in Ecuador in the late eighties, studying Spanish, history, and international relations. Her continuing interest in US policy in Latin America was piqued by the Clinton administration’s increase of military funding to Colombia, and she set herself the task of learning more about the country’s history and its on-going civil conflict. In the process, she heard about the Balsita Community’s work, and initiated a correspondence with them in 2001. She was planning her first trip to visit the community when she met photojournalist Betty Udesen in a coffee shop in Seattle. The two have subsequently made three trips to visit and document the lives of the Balsita families. In addition to creating a photo exhibit about the community, in 2004 they produced The Choice, a short documentary.
Emily’s recent performances include Byron Au Yong’s Kidnapping Water: Bottled Operas and For These Unclosings, a collaboration with New Media Sculptor Susie J. Lee, dancer & choreographer Ying Zhou and visual artist Keeara Rhoades. She directs the Voice Program at the Academy of Music Northwest and teaches privately.