I started my career as a still photographer cutting my teeth at Time Life while I was in college in NY. Finding stills work a little lonely I started making films and over the next 15 years directed hundreds of commercials, television pilots and music videos. But, busy as I was in this commercial arena, I felt a continual frustration that that work didn’t satisfy my early dreams of exploring deeper human stories. I found myself attracted to complex tales of people in diverse and extraordinary worlds and finally settled on one to pursue. That film became the documentary, Sound and Fury, about the 250-year-old battle in the world of the deaf world over the identity of Deaf children. The film opened at Sundance and was nominated for an Academy Award, launching me in the documentary world where I found my professional home.
In the years that followed I made films that took me into many fascinating worlds: The Opposite Sex and Beautiful Daughters, about the struggles of being transsexual, classical music films, Playing For Real and Talent Has Hunger for PBS, a Hudson River series celebrating the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson’s first trip up the Hudson and a feature about an American cowboy tradition, Bullrider. Orchestra of Exiles was my first historical documentary which I made because it was about a forgotten Jewish violinist who saved 1000 Jews from the Holocaust, started the culture of Israel and was himself one of the most famous musicians of the 20th century and his story had never been told. That film became a labor of love, as is the film I’m making now, To Be of Service.
Josh Aronson is also a pianist and regularly plays chamber music in New York and at the Telluride Musicfest, the chamber music festival he founded in 2002 with his wife, violinist Maria Bachmann.