Meet the Programming Team

Find out more about the industry professionals who curate the Official Selection 2019.

Abbe Robinson


Abbe is a multi-award winning filmmaker. She has worked as an assistant director for over 15 years and has been commissioned twice as a Writer/Director by the UK Film Council and Screen Yorkshire. Her short film Private Life played at over 150 film festivals worldwide, winning 21 awards and her recent film La Ragazza e la Gondola is currently on the festival circuit. Abbe has been a programmer for numerous festivals.

Aduke King


Aduke has worked as a Short Film Programme Advisor for several leading film festivals. She has experience working with BFI London Film Festival as well as East End Film Festival, Underwire and London Short Film Festival. She loves discovering new films and emerging talent, helping them to reach a wider audience. She enjoys getting the chance to write about film, and has crafted articles for BFI.

Alex Tobin


Alex is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice incorporates elements of experimental animation, programming, performance and music. He studied in Edinburgh and Kyoto, and has exhibited and performed at venues across Scotland including CCA, DCA, Tramway and Summerhall. He has been programing for Aesthetica for several years and is a committee member of Dundee-based arts collective Yuck ’n Yum.

Andy Guy

Comedy, Music, VR & Features

Andy is the Festival & Technical Coordinator for ASFF. Prior to joining ASFF he worked as a composer, Editor and Producer on a number of award-winning short, feature and documentary proejcts that have screened at Berlinale, Tribeca and Toronto. Andy joined the Aesthetica team in 2017 and has played an instrumental role in the Aesthetica Short Film Festival’s new developments for 2018-2019.

Cherie Federico

Advertising, Fashion & Features

Cherie is the Editor of Aesthetica Magazine and the Director of the BAFTA Recognised Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF). Originally from New York, Cherie moved to the UK in 2002 to study for her Masters degree and founded Aesthetica, which she has developed into an international brand distributed in 525 stores in the UK and exported to 20 countries. Interested in visual culture, setting up ASFF has been a career highlight.

Dale Donley


Dale is the Production Director and co-founder of Aesthetica Magazine and ASFF. He spent his early career working as an artist and then moved into graphic design. He is passionate about film and animation in particular. He loves to see animators pushing the boundaries of their craft to create something entirely new. He believes in strong aesthetics and powerful narratives that create a unique experience for the audience.

Emma Parker


Emma is passionate about film festivals and documentary. She spent 2016 and 2017 as interim Marketing Manager at City Screen Picturehouse in York. Prior to working at Picturehouse Emma was Assistant Producer at DocHouse, the UK’s first cinema dedicated to documentary. Emma has produced events at The Great Yorkshire Fringe in collaboration with Cinem@, and worked as Venue Manager at Sheffield Doc/Fest.

Mathieu Ajan


Mathieu is a BFI NETWORK talent executive and the founder of Bounce Cinema, a pop-up cinema dedicated to bringing communities together and celebrating exciting new filmmaking talent. As a director, producer and photographer Mathieu is also well versed in the creative, technical and development aspects of filmmaking. Mathieu is passionate about championing new talent and has supported many filmmakers.

Mike Stubbs

Artists’ Film

Mike is the Artist & Creative Producer at Doncaster 20-22. Encompassing performance and new media, Stubbs’ work explores power, technology and identity. He has won many prizes for his films, exhibited at TATE, BALTIC, ACMI and the Science Museum. He was made a Fleck Fellow for Banff Art Centre and Honorary Professor in Liverpool and Sydney. Stubbs is former Director at FACT, Liverpool, presenting innovative film and video.

Mikey Murray


Mikey is an award-winning filmmaker and was the recipient of the Scottish BAFTA award for Best First Time Writer in 2007. A graduate of UCLA’s Directing and Screenwriting MA, Mikey also has a PhD in Film Practice and is a programme leader for BA Film Production at theUniversity of Lincoln. He has previously programmed for Slamdance and is the director of the Indie-Lincs International Film Festival.

Rob Speranza


Rob is a producer, director and line producer from New York who currently resides in the UK. His feature film credits include Arthur and Merlin, Entity, Inbred and Small Creatures (nominated for Best Film at EIFF 2013) alongside 15 short films. He has enjoyed screenings and awards at hundreds of festivals globally and has won over 60 awards for his work. Rob holds an MA and a PhD in film studies from the University of Sheffield.