Terri Sarris is an award-winning media artist and educator who has taught documentary, experimental, and narrative film, “screendance,” and studio television production at the University of Michigan for over two decades.
buzzards steal your picnic, Sarris’ documentary profile of Frank Pahl, (Detroit composer and creator of self-playing musical automatons) was awarded "Best Michigan Film" at the Detroit International Documentary Festival in 2007 and at the Ann Arbor Film Festival in 2008. The film also screened at the 2010 Sound Symposium in Newfoundland.
Sarris is currently finishing The Radiant Sun, a documentary portrait of the Michigan modernist textile designer Ruth Adler Schnee. The film has screened at numerous venues, including the Palazzo Mocenigo in Venice, Italy, during the 2011 Venice Bienalle in conjunction with an exhibit of Adler-Schnee’s textiles.
With her former student UM Alum Sultan Sharrief, Sarris helped to found the “EFEX Project” (Encouraging the Filmmaking Experience), which began in Spring 2006 as a UM course in “Community Filmmaking.” With the EFEX program, she produced the independent feature film Bilal’s Stand (written and directed by Sharrief), one of 8 films screened in the NEXT category of the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.
Sarris also performs with the toy band, “Little Bang Theory,” the brainchild of Frank Pahl. Their performance of the score for Ladislav Starewicz’ animated film The Mascot premiered at the Ann Arbor Film Festival in April 2010. In fall of 2012, they will be performing live scores to two Ozu films along with Japanese Benshi performer Ichiro Kataoka.