Dr. Jenna Maria Constantine, Award-winning filmmaker, producer, writer, director, cinematographer, playwright, composer, performer, Founder and Owner of KaplaniKid Productions, believes:
“…one thought…one word…one story…one voice…and the universe is changed…”
She received her Ph.D. and M.A. degrees from Northwestern University, where she studied as an NIMH Fellow, and her BA from North Central College where she was made an Honorary Member of the Black Student Association. Selected as the Outstanding Young Woman of Illinois for her civic contributions to the State of Illinois, she appeared on local and national media commenting on urban, cultural and social issues. Her pioneer book researching child abuse and domestic violence has been translated in eight languages and she served on D-Sen. Phil Rock’s original committee to establish laws mandating reporting of child abuse and neglect in Illinois. She has been a visiting professor at several colleges and universities including, Northwestern University. During all this time she was a working actress in the Chicagoland area and lead singer performing with her rock band, The Mother Goose, throughout the Midwest and Las Vegas.
Currently KaplaniKid Productions is in pre-production on several feature length projects written by her:
‘A SICILIAN ODYSSEY II: THE FAMILY’ ©2017 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
‘A SICILIAN ODYSSEY III: THE REVEAL’ ©2019 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
« εἴκοσι ἕξι δευτερόλεπτα » (’26 seconds’) a three-act stage play ©2018 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
«Το Πρώτο Περίπατο της Εποχής» (‘The First Walk of the Season’) ©2020 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
‘A SICILIAN ODYSSEY’ the award-winning feature length docu-fiction film written and directed by Jenna Maria Constantine, was shot on the island of Sicily. It had its debut screening at the 2010 Festival de Cannes in France and screened in the US and Europe. Its awards include Best Docu-Fiction film and Best Biographical Film. While in post-production of ‘A SICILIAN ODYSSEY’ Constantine continued performing at various Chicago night spots.
‘THE SPIRIT OF THE CHICAGO GREEKS!’ written, produced and narrated by Jenna Maria Constantine, screened at the 2006 Festival de Cannes and went on to win 4 awards in NYC, LA, Greece and Cyprus. Of the 4 awards won, the most treasured, by the Director, is the “For the Emotion of the Film Award” won in Greece in 2006.
‘IF APHRODITE HAD ARMS’ Constantine’s intensely moving and sweeping documentary, addresses the 1974 invasion and division of the Republic of Cyprus and the struggles that still exist in the turbulent world of Cyprus today. It screened at the 2007 Festival de Cannes, the Cyprus International Film Festival, and aired on European television. ‘IF APHRODITE HAD ARMS…TODAY’ is in post-production.
An accomplished performing musician, she studied voice with former Lyric Opera soloist Bernard Izzo and she composed the original score for ‘A SICILIAN ODYSSEY’ and its theme song ‘Ni Viremu’ (‘I will see you again’). Currently, she is scoring a theme song for A SICILIAN ODYSSEY II and III. She wrote and performed the original theme song, «Ξυπνα, κόρη μου» (Awaken, my daughter) for ‘THE SPIRIT OF THE CHICAGO GREEKS!’ and, composed and performed the original theme song «Έλα Κοντά Μου» (‘Come close to me’), for ‘IF APHRODITE HAD ARMS.’ She wrote and performed the song, “Your Love Has Changed My Life” for a documentary she wrote and produced on child abuse, which won Honorable Mention at the Western Psychological Film Festival.
She produced, hosted and edited her successful weekly television talk show, ‘JENNA ‘ROUND THE VINEYARD’ for MVTV on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts; and, produced and edited the documentary short, ‘A HOME IN PROGRESS’ featuring Rotary International and Habitat for Humanity.
As an actress she won critical acclaim and standing ovations for her portrayal of Aldonza/Dulcinea in ‘MAN of La MANCHA.’ Her hilarious and zany performances as Princess Winnifred in ‘ONCE UPON A MATTRESS’ and her bawdy interpretation of Nancy in ‘OLIVER!’ are still discussed on the ‘L’ looping around Chicago. A proud Greek-American, she loves the ‘O Cafe’ on 6th Avenue in NYC, the Northwestern University Wildcats, the 2016 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs, music, tennis and is inspired by the memories of her beloved Grandfather…
Κωνσταντίνος Δημήτριος Γλιαρμής (Konstantinos Demetrios Gliarmis) born on the island of Samos, Greece, and an off-Broadway actor… she gives his ‘regards and remembers him to Herald Square’ whenever she’s there.
“The moving image has to move you” ~ Dr. Jenna Maria Constantine
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