February 22, 2021

Kemiyondo Coutinho BA ’12

2020
Outstanding Young Alumna Award

Kemiyondo is the founder of a production company, a music platform, and the #fivefor5 initiative, which will grant five Ugandan female filmmakers the chance to make a short film. Her own directorial debut film, Kyenvu, won multiple international awards; additional awards and honors include John Singleton’s Filmmaker’s Fellowship, Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud Filmmaking Fellowship, a Shadow and Act Rising Star Award, Forbes Africa30 Under 30 recipient, and OKAY Africa’s 100 Women of Africa to Watch recipient. Kemiyondo can be seen in Apple TV’s Little America, and wrote for MTV’s Undressed and Starz’s Step Up: High Water.

Kemiyondo has been writing and acting since age 17. She earned her MFA in acting from the American Conservatory Theater, and is the founder of Kemistry Klass, a production company, and A Ka Dope, a music platform that showcases new musical talent in Uganda. In its first three years, A Ka Dope featured over 250 new artists.

Kemiyondo’s directorial debut was Kyenvu, which won the Oscar-qualifying Best Short Film award at the Pan African Film Festival along with multiple international awards, including the Harness Social Impact award at NBC Universal’s Short Film Festival. She is the inaugural recipient of John Singleton’s Filmmaker’s Fellowship and also received Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud Filmmaking Fellowship. In the spirit of promoting Ugandan female filmmakers, she started the #fivefor5 initiative, which will grant five Ugandan female filmmakers the chance to make a short film of their own.

Additional accolades include Shadow and Act Rising Star award, Forbes Africa 30 Under 30 recipient, and OKAYAfrica’s 100 Women of Africa to Watch recipient. Kemiyondo can be seen in Apple TV’s Little America, and wrote for MTV’s Undressed and Starz’s Step Up: High Water.