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This Is My Home

Directed by Karl Nickoley
Documentary Feature
USA | 89 min | 2019

Two Irish Immigrant musicians, The Black Donnellys, embark on a quest to set a Guinness World Record playing 60 shows in ALL 50 states in just 35 days! Racing against the clock, they examine the pursuit of the American Dream from an immigrant’s perspective and how music connects us all. Will they make it?

When the Black Donnelly’s, a Las Vegas—based Irish duo, approached me at Frequency Pictures about their plan to play 60 shows in all 50 states in 40 days, it was instantly clear that this could be more than a great American road trip film (albeit with expatriate Irishmen).

Band members Dave Rooney and Dave Browne aren’t just performers, after all. They’re immigrants, too, setting off on an adventure to discover America. Along the journey, they explore the country’s deep Irish heritage, and their wider relationship to recent immigrants from across the world. In our time of introspection and reflection as a nation defined by immigrants, these two musicians offered the perfect opportunity to discover our collective national character. Does the American dream still exist?

Are new immigrants, and those descended from immigrants still drawn together by a common bond?

“This is My Home” is also about music, and how it can connect us all, despite our differences. With their music, Rooney and Browne form an intimate bond with audiences at every venue they visit.

The beauty of “This is My Home” is the fact that it’s apolitical in a time when the very word immigration can barely be uttered without risking conflict. Two musicians travel the country to share their own Irish heritage, and are welcomed with open arms by Americans of diverse backgrounds. That was my personal goal with the film.

The true potential of the film emerged at a critical turning point just ten days into the trip: The Black Donnellys ran out of money. That’s when an ambitious goal to get into the Guinness Book of World Records for the third time became symbolic of the American dream.

They made a decision to fight—to overcome whatever obstacles were placed in their way— and claim their own version of what early immigrants believed they would find in America: streets paved with gold and the freedom to be who you want to be.

– Karl Nickoley, Director “This Is My Home”

This Is My Home | Black Donnellys - Movie Poster

Karl NickoleyKarl Nickoley
Karl Nickoley, director of “This is My Home,” is far from a newcomer to the documentary and filmmaking worlds. For over a decade, he’s produced dozens of commercials, music videos, short films, feature films and immersive video and film. With deep experience in producing and financing, his company, Frequency Pictures, been able to build up an impressive client list in a short time, while at the same time, initiating and funding Nickoley’s independent directorial projects.

A Las Vegas-based creator, Nickoley has worked with clients across the country, taking on challenging projects and newer technologies, such as the award-winning 360 video experience he directed for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. He’s worked with top clients, including AT&T, Ford, Gieco, AMC Network and Dr. Pepper, and has been recognized at numerous film festival awards around the world, where his productions have received several “audience choice” awards. One client remarked, If you are a marketer looking for someone to deliver a product that will impress—Karl is your guy. Another lauded his quality and engaging content.

Film Information

Directors:  Karl Nickoley
Country: USA
Year: 2019
Language: English
Runtime: 89 min.
Rated: Not Rated


Producer: Karl Nickoley, Greg Ahn, Dave Rooney, Dave Browne
Editor: Aaron Shelton, Andy Westfall, Karl Nickoley

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BIFF - Beloit International Film Festival
BIFF | Beloit International Film Festival