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Antigonish International Film Festival

By Denise Davies
First published on Sept 13th 2013

It’s that time of the year again! The Antigonish International Film Festival (AIFF) is getting in gear for the 7th year of exciting documentary films October 18-19.

The Film Festival began in 2007 with the inspiration and guidance of Dr. Carole Roy who has initiated and organized film festivals in other parts of Canada before coming to Antigonish. Under her leadership a team of volunteers works hard throughout the year to select and source the films, organize the venues, approach the sponsors, put together the program, design the graphics and art work, organize the community dinner, organize the festival volunteers, manage the finances and get the word out with our PR and marketing.  It is a fun group of dedicated people to work with and we enjoy our meetings and activities as we get ready for the big weekend in October.   This year our new chair person is Pam Chisholm who has taken on the leadership role for 2013.

Antigonish International Film Festival

Promotional photograph from the film For Once In My Life, provided by the Antigonish International Film Festival.

We have an exciting festival this year with 32 films dealing with issues from agriculture to history, health to environmental activism, social justice to music and much more in between.  Film is a powerful and entertaining way to explore a diversity of topics.  We discover parts of the world that are new to us, find inspiring stories from new voices, and learn more about important social issues that are all around us.  It is a great opportunity to meet people who enjoy film and learning more about our world.

The Festival would not be possible without the support of our many community sponsors.  This year we have over 100 sponsors from the community – individuals, businesses and organizations.  Their generous sponsorships keep the ticket prices affordable and help us to pay the fees for the Public Performance Rights, supporting independent filmmaking and making the Festival the exciting community event that it is.

Here are two of the films featured in the 2013 festival.  For Once in My Life  by Directors Jim Bigham & Mark Moormann  is an inspiring documentary which takes a look  at a band made up of singers and musicians with a wide range of mental and physical disabilities, revealing the struggles and triumphs they encounter while on a journey to become true musicians and perform for large audiences. With passionate concert footage and intimate behind-the-scenes glimpses into the band members’ lives, this film paints a heart-warming portrait of what people can do when given a chance.

The ancient Maya believed this present world would end and a new cycle arise after 5125 years. Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth by Directors Frauke Sandig & Eric Black follows six young Maya in Guatemala and Chiapas through their daily and ceremonial lives. Their indigenous perspective in which all life is sacred and interconnected is presented in their own words, without narration. Each story touches upon a facet of the current global crisis and is a deeply compelling alternative to the prevailing worldview.

Antigonish International Film Festival

Promotional photograph from the film Heart Of Sky, Heart Of Earth, provided by the Antigonish International Film Festival.

We are excited that the Capitol Theatre is showing more films this year and along with the beautiful People’s Place we have the Town Council Chambers as a venue.  Having the 3 venues on Main Street allows for easy movement between venues and more comfortable seating.

See more on the website. www.antigonishfilmfest.org  and join us on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/Antigonishinternationalfilmfestival


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