Emmanuel Vaughan-Lee

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Emmanuel Vaughan-Lee (born 1979 in London, England) is a filmmaker, musician, and composer. Emmanuel is the son of Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, a Sufi mystic and lineage successor in the Naqshbandiyya-Mujaddidiyya Sufi Order.


Vaughan-Lee attended Berklee College of Music in Boston to pursue musical studies in improvisation and composition.[1] After graduating from Berklee in 2001, Vaughan-Lee performed and recorded with numerous artists including Mary Stallings, Lionel Loueke, Dayna Stephens, Ferenc Nemeth and Ambrose Akinmusire.[2] He recorded and released two albums under his own name – Previous Misconceptions (2001 – Emanjazz) and Borrowed Time (2005 – Fresh Sound New Talent).[3]

In 2005, Vaughan-Lee founded the Global Oneness Project, an online educational multimedia platform. He has directed and produced numerous films that have been featured and distributed on PBS, The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Yorker, National Geographic, Outside (magazine), and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).[4]

In 2012, Vaughan-Lee's debut feature film, Elemental, made its world premiere at the Mill Valley Film Festival.[5] Variety called the film "inspiring".[6] The New York Times wrote the following review about Elemental – "This sensitively scored film complicates the typical missionary's progress arc by acknowledging its would-be heroes' weaknesses and the day-to-day obstacles to doing good."[7] The film went on to play at more than 50 film festivals internationally with theatrical distribution handled by The Film Collaborative.[8] and digital and non theatrical by Cinema Guild.[9]

In collaboration with composer H. Scott Salinas, he composed music for his films Elemental and Laugh Clown Laugh.

In 2013, Vaughan-Lee's documentary Yukon Kings exhibited at the National Museum of the American Indian, part of the Smithsonian Institution. It was also featured in National Geographic (magazine).

In 2014, Vaughan-Lee's documentaries Isle de Jean Charles and Marie's Dictionary were featured on The New York Times Op-Docs.[10] His documentary Soleá was featured in The New Yorker.[11]

In 2016, Vaughan-Lee produced Welcome to Canada which premiered at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival and screened at the Seattle International Film Festival,[12] and was featured in National Geographic (magazine).[13]

In 2017, Vaughan-Lee's virtual reality (VR) film Sanctuaries of Silence premiered at the New York Film Festival,[14] and in 2018, it was selected to screen at a number of festivals worldwide, including SXSW Film Festival,[15] Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival,[16] Seattle International Film Festival,[17] Telluride Mountainfilm,[18] AFI DOCS, and was nominated for the VR Award at Sheffield Doc/Fest. Sanctuaries of Silence is available to watch in 360 on The New York Times Op-Docs,[19] and as VR on the NYT VR app,[20] and Jaunt.[21]

In April 2018, Vaughan-Lee's Film Earthrise premiered at Tribeca Film Festival[22] and won the Audience Award at AFI DOCS.[23]

In March 2019, Vaughan-Lee's virtual reality (VR) film The Atomic Tree premiered at SXSW Film Festival, [1] and was nominated for the VR narrative award at Sheffield Doc/Fest.

He is currently the executive editor of Emergence Magazine [24].

Related websites[edit]


  1. ^ Berklee College of Music November 2001
  2. ^ Slambrouck, Paul, ‘The Christian Science Monitor’ ‘ , 1 March 2010
  3. ^ All Music
  4. ^ Slambrouck, Paul ‘The Christian Science Monitor’ ‘ , 1 March 2010
  5. ^ Edition.html, ‘ ‘San Francisco Magazine’ ‘ 3 October 2012
  6. ^ Harvey, Dennis, ‘Variety Magazine‘ ‘ ,29 October 2012
  7. ^ Rapold, Nicolas 'The New York Times', 16 May 2013
  8. ^ http://www.thefilmcollaborative.org/films/elemental
  9. ^ http://store.cinemaguild.com/nontheatrical/product/2442.html
  10. ^ Vaughan-Lee, Emmanuel ‘The New York Times’ ‘ , 2 June 2014
  11. ^ Vaughan-Lee, Emmanuel 'The New Yorker', 11 November 2014
  12. ^ https://www.siff.net/festival/welcome-to-canada
  13. ^ http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/short-film-showcase/for-syrian-refugees-he-is-a-friendly-face-in-a-strange-new-land
  14. ^ https://www.filmlinc.org/nyff2017/films/sanctuaries-of-silence/
  15. ^ https://schedule.sxsw.com/2018/films/VC112381
  16. ^ https://boxoffice.hotdocs.ca/websales/pages/info.aspx?evtinfo=73875~6d071c1e-1d5b-4e4e-ab61-2b9caf21a7fd&epguid=c9911a12-f347-4bd0-b786-91c532d30fe7
  17. ^ https://www.siff.net/media/siff-spotlight/festival-spotlight-vr-zone
  18. ^ https://www.mountainfilm.org/media/vr-sanctuaries-of-silence
  19. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/27/opinion/silence-forests.html?smid=fb-share
  20. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/marketing/nytvr/
  21. ^ https://www.jauntvr.com/title/2e221a012b
  22. ^ https://www.tribecafilm.com/filmguide/earthrise-2018
  23. ^ http://blog.afi.com/announcing-the-afi-docs-2018-audience-award-winners/
  24. ^ https://www.emergencemagazine.org/

External links[edit]