Hearing is Believing is the new feature documentary from award-winning Honolulu-born producer/director Lorenzo DeStefano (Talmage Farlow, Los Zafiros-Music from the Edge of Time), introducing the world to the phenomenally talented young musician and composer, Rachel Flowers.
Born 15 weeks premature, at a body weight of one pound five ounces, Rachel lost her eyesight due to Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP). At two, she began picking up melodies from her musician parents and was soon playing every song she heard by ear, including Bach fugues. The child had perfect pitch.
Starting her formal musical education at the age of 4, Rachel spent the next 10 years studying at the Southern California Conservatory of Music, while completing her mainstream education through elementary, middle, and high school. She was featured in two episodes of 60 Minutes in 2005 and 2008, when she was 12 and 15 years old.
DeStefano and his team have created a dynamic and engaging portrait of a year and a half in the life of a tight knit American family, a single mom and her two kids, living paycheck to paycheck in working class Oxnard, California, with Rachel’s stunning music as the soundtrack. Hearing is Believing revels in Rachel’s joyous and free-flowing love of song, illuminating the bonds of family and the divine mysteries of creativity.
Among the great musicians appearing with Rachel in the film are Grammy winners Stevie Wonder, Dweezil Zappa, Arturo Sandoval, two-time Grammy nominated jazz pianist, Taylor Eigsti, the late Progressive Rock icon Keith Emerson, Hawaii ukulele legend Benny Chong, and 50 members of the Santa Barbara Youth Symphony performing Rachel’s original composition, “At The End Of The Day”.
Rachel Flowers is a true survivor, a hyper-abled individual whose inspiring story has the potential to be a beacon of hope out there.
Director Lorenzo DeStefano and Rachel Flowers herself will be in attendance at the Festival.