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Pacific Northwest Ballet Launches Dance Film Festival

In October, Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB) announced the launch of the PNB Dance Film Festival, accepting submissions through December 15, 2021, for their March 18, 2022, virtual premiere. With only a few dance film festivals dedicated solely to showcasing the art form, PNB wants to provide a platform to amplify dance films and emerging artists.

“The idea for this festival was born from the unprecedented explosion of digital dance creativity that emerged during the pandemic and stretched our art-form in ways never experienced before,” said Price Suddarth, the Festival Manager and soloist with Pacific Northwest Ballet. 

COVID-19 forced the dance community to find new ways to create and share their art digitally. Many companies and studios adapted to keep their community engaged by transforming their approach to traditional stage performances by creating dance films. While it kept dancers working, it also allowed for a more creative approach to recording movement, bleeding into the film scene more than it ever had before. PNB hopes to foster an environment where this innovation and connection can continue even when in-person performances are back in full swing.

The two winning filmmakers of short (three minutes or less) and feature (12 minutes maximum) dance films will be offered commissions to create original digital works that will be showcased as part of PNB’s 50th anniversary season from 2022 to 2023. There is no fee to submit a film for consideration, but filmmakers must clear their own music, design, and collaborator rights. For detailed submission information, visit PNB.org/filmfest.

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Lauren Bjella is the social media and design manager at The Independent and a senior undergraduate journalism student with minors in dance, nonprofit communication, and women’s, gender, & sexuality studies at Emerson College. As a dancer for 19 years, she has a passion for the arts and movement but also writing about it. In her free time, she likes to embroider tote bags and build elaborate charcuterie boards.

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