A feature documentary about a Queer African-American and an Aging Asian Female Broadway Veteran who set out to break the barriers of the world of professional ballroom competition where male is lead and female to follow.


FollowLeadLOVE is about a Queer African-American and an Aging Asian Female Broadway veteran defying the odds of once and for all break the barriers of the ballroom world’s traditional and regimented gender roles of male being the leader and female as the follower. But the question is, can they usher it to the next level of true gender equality, while confronting the systemic political & socio-cultural issues they are facing personally and professionally?

This film shows Kristine Bendul’s journey as a 47 y/o Female Asian-American including her story of being adopted when she was around 1 y/o in Korea by white parents. Throughout this film , the audience will see how she navigates to connect to her Asian roots, finding her inner voice of empowerment, her process of uncovering, discovering and her attempt towards believing in herself regardless of her gender, race and age.

We also look at how Abdiel Jacobsen navigates through identifying as a Queer African-American coming from a very strict religious upbringing. The film shows how Abdiel finds the voice and freedom of expression to the fullest, including performing in heels while proving the importance of embracing all personalities and diversities of people. 

FollowLeadLOVE transcends beyond dance. It reflects the trials and tribulations of Abdiel and Kristine both on and off the dance floor as they look into embracing the shift of their roles in order to create an opportunity to transform from within. In addition, this film shows how they exercise and fight for their rights as partners and individuals on the stigma due to ongoing racial prejudice and social injustice, further magnified by the pandemic caused by COVID-19.  

This is also a documentary that unravels the ugly and inconvenient truth of cultural racism happening within some of the facets of the Performing Arts Institutions. It reveals the subtleties of how they assign values and perpetrates the normalization of white supremacy in order to rationalize the unequal status and degrading treatment of Communities of Color behind their superficial embrace of inclusion and diversity.

Main Subjects

Mission & Goals

FollowLeadLOVE resonates beyond the world of ballroom dance as it also illuminates racial and social biases in our today’s society. That said, our goals are:
  • Entertain, enlighten and educate its audience  while serving as one of the catalysts to help start a civilized conversation on  political and socio-cultural issues in our today’s society.
  • Engage not only the Dance and Arts Communities but the broader and wider audience of Asian & African-American communities, LGBTQI+ as well as the Female demographics to name a few, on a civilized dialogue about representation, acceptance, female empowerment and equality.
  • Take our Audience Engagement as well as Social Impact message through diverse platforms of distributions worldwide.
  • Create a broader platform for the marginalized & underrepresented to see stories that truly reflect their lives, so we can help empower them through the  much needed socio-cultural education and exposure using this film as one of the mediums.
  • Help elevate a more diverse, inclusive,& equal access to innovation and opportunities in the world of media programming by maximizing its reach in order to build a more sustainable cultural ecosystem  that humanity can be proud to pass on to the future generations.

Creative Crew


Interviewees / Supporting Subjects