Directed and Produced by: Rachel Lears
Produced by: Martín Ubillos
Director of Photography: Rachel Lears
Music: Ernesto Díaz & Yisela Sosa
Editing: Raúl Barcelona & Rachel Lears
Associate Producers: Patricia Benabe & Fernando Morillo
Consulting Producers: Mitch Teplitsky & Cheryl Furjanic
Consultants: Daniel Márquez, Mario Jacob, Juan Pellicer, Fernanda Rossi

Film Details

Release Date: 2009
Runtime: 52 min.
In Spanish (with English subtitles)

Birds of Passage (Aves de Paso) presents a lyrical journey through the everyday lives of two young Uruguayan songwriters. Ernesto and Yisela have moved to the capital, leaving behind their respective hometowns on the borders of Brazil and Argentina. After many years of composing songs that reflect their origins, both decide to explore new horizons and each seeks to fulfill the dream of recording an album.

While Yisela struggles to reconcile the emerging possibilities of a career in Uruguay with her plans to move to Argentina, Ernesto confronts personal conflicts that threaten to sabotage his creative passion. The film fuses the arts of documentary film and music, interweaving the songs and stories of these two young composers. With striking vérité cinematography and an unforgettable soundtrack, Birds of Passage explores the challenges of being a young artist and the art of searching, inside and outside oneself.


  • "Outstanding Achievement Certificate in International Film", Williamsburg International Film Festival (2011)

  • Two national tours of Uruguay in mobile HD drive-in format, sponsored by Medio y Medio Films and the Ministerio de Educación y Cultura

  • Fulbright IIE grant for production, 2005

  • Instituto de Cine y Audiovisual de Uruguay (ICAU) post-production grant, 2009

  • Broadcast: Canal Futura (Brazil, 2010)

  • Official Selection: Park City Film and Music Festival (Park City, UT); Sydney Latin American Film Festival; Cinemassi Festival of Latin American Cinema (Helsinki); Atlantic City International Film and Music Festival; Atlántidoc III Festival Internacional de Cine Documental (Atlántida, Uruguay); Ojos de Mujer Festival de Cine (Montevideo, Uruguay)


DVDs for personal and institutional use are available from our educational distributor DER Documentary

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