Spectral Transmissions

  • Michael Palmieri, Donal Mosher
  • United States
  • 2021
  • 70 min
  • Performance, Immersive
  • World Premiere
  • IDFA on Stage

The multidisciplinary film duo Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher bring their curated audio works to the stage with help from a host of celebrated filmmakers and writers. Though created during during lockdown, with artists contributing from a distance, this program returns us to the communal thrills and comforts of storytelling, music, and performance.

In Spectral Transmissions isolation and alienation takes the form of “hungry ghosts”, dreams, and hallucinations. In his own stories, Mosher interweaves the AIDS pandemic with x-ray photography, the coronavirus, and talks about his parents’ respiratory ailments. Archive footage illustrates a 1953 newspaper article about a haunted television set. Poet James Davis links video game ghosts to childhood memories. Writer Dodie Bellamy explores paranoia in gentrified San Francisco. And a frightening ghost story by Steven Sheil about an old tape recorder challenges ideas about memory and technology. With a soundtrack composed by Palmieri and performed live with film, stories, and special guests.


  • 70 min
  • color / black and white
  • cross-platform
  • Spoken languages: English, French
  • Subtitles in: English
Michael Palmieri, Donal Mosher
Michael Palmieri for Wishbone Films
Key collaborator
Kirsten Johnson, Dick Johnson, Jeanie Finlay, Steven Sheil, Courtney Stephens, Maya Daisy Hawke, Dodie Bellamy, James Davis, Charlotte Selb
Michael Palmieri, Donal Mosher
Michael Palmieri

IDFA history

World Premiere
IDFA on Stage

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