Meet the Programming Team

Find out more about the industry professionals behind this year’s Official Selection. Our inspiring team have years of experience in programming, commissioning, publishing, production, curation and direction.


Andy Guy

Comedy & 360 Film

Andy is the Festival & Technical Coordinator for ASFF. Prior to joining Aesthetica, 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.

Caragh Davison

Drama

Caragh works across BFI NETWORK’s UK-wide activity with a focus on designing their flagship talent development programmes such as NETWORK@LFF and NETWORK Weekender, as well as managing the NETWORK website and supporting the delivery of their partner work with BAFTA, British Council and BIFA among others. Her mission throw the doors open to new filmmakers from all walks of life.

Cherie Federico

Advertising, Fashion

Cherie is the Editor of Aesthetica Magazine and the Director of the BAFTA-Qualifying 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 to 525 stores in the UK, and exported to 20 countries. Interested in visual culture, setting up ASFF has been a career highlight.

Dale Donley

Animation

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

Documentary

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

Kit Monkman

Artists’ Film

Kit is an artist, filmmaker and leading innovator in screen-based art and interactive media. He directed the visually experimental feature Macbeth and co-directed The Knife That Killed Me. He is also co-founder of KMA – an artistic collaboration that specialises in environmental installations – whose works have dramatically transformed public spaces across the world. Kit has worked with the likes of Prince and DV8.

Leigh Bowser

Dance, Music Video & Family Friendly

Leigh is a visual artist and textile practitioner who joined the ASFF programming team in 2019. This year, her role has expanded to include the Family Friendly and Music categories. Leigh has worked extensively with both children and adults, and is passionate about the benefits of the arts. She is interested in inclusive films that represent marginalised and underrepresented stories; cinema for audiences of all ages.

Mathieu Ajan

Drama

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.


Mikey Murray

Thriller

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 the University of Lincoln. He has previously programmed for Slamdance and is the director of the Indie-Lincs International Film Festival.

Qila Gill

Experimental

Qila Gill is a film producer and programmer. Alongside programming for the Aesthetica Film Festival, she is part of the selection committee for Sheffield Doc/Fest and curates the queer experimental shorts for The Palace International Film Festival, as well as having worked with the BFI London Film Festival, Encounters Film Festival and London Short Film Festival. She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Rob Speranza

Features

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.