A Conservative Mennonite background shapes Steven’s teaching within the most progressive community in America
I met filmmaker Rick Skillman at an audition for The Normal Heart — Larry Kramer’s “primal scream” about America’s response to AIDS. We were both auditioning with Charlotte Tiencken, who was directing the staged reading on Vashon.
I didn’t know Skillman, or anything about his work, so when he asked if I would be willing to be interviewed by him as an artist, I wasn’t sure what to think.
I was a teacher. Whatever gave him the idea I was an artist?
But then I checked out Eagle Digital Productions online. And we met for coffee at Minglement Roasterie here on Vashon, and we talked. He was convinced he wanted my story.
As we talked further, I was surprised to see that Rick had been doing on video what we here at Soul Teachers have been doing in blogs (and now a podcast). So I agreed.
Over the course of two Saturdays, we met in our living room in Dockton. In a free-ranging conversation, we talked about my past and what I’ve tried to do with my life. Then Skillman went away and worked with the interview.
The result was a long-form video essay constructed by Skillman, using video clips and family photos I supplied.
This film has been broken into six parts. We’ll be posting one every other week this summer, and at the end, we’ll post the entire video.
I hope you enjoy this interview series.