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Fostering a film culture

The Nickelodeon Theatre's Indie Grits Film Festival continues through April 21 in Columbia. The State's Otis Taylor interviewed the Nickelodeon's executive director, Andy Smith, about the festival's expansion into new demographics and what's in store for the future. __________________ In its seventh year, the festival presented by Nickelodeon Theatre has expanded beyond film to include food, theater art and music. Love, Peace and Hip Hop: Columbia Hip Hop Family Day, the festival held last Saturday on Main Street, undoubtedly introduced Indie Grits brand to a new demographic. In January, Andy Smith, the Nick’s executive director, sat on a panel about race and cinema at Art House Convergence, the annual conference of independent art house theaters. It’s already difficult to have success in the independent film world because theaters are dependent on distributors for content. Now consider if distributors ignored certain films. "Film distributors aren’t very supportive of black filmmakers,'"Smith said. Ava DuVernay, who in 2012 became the first black woman to win the best director award at the Sundance Film Festival, was on the panel at the conference in Utah. Her film, “Middle of Nowhere,” screened at the Nick earlier this year. DuVernay is the founder of a boutique distribution company that supports independent black filmmakers. There’s a ripe market for growth — in viewers and filmmakers — in Columbia, and that is a goal the Nick in seeking to achieve, in part, through the work of Sherard Duvall, the theater’s new media education director. "We’re going to be working a lot with African-American males and some of the underserved communities here" Smith said. “We see the Nickelodeon making a long term investment, from education to exhibition. Because we have those tools, and then we’ve got the skills of Sherard as somebody who is going to be able to pull that off." Read the rest of the interview. Via: The State

Read more here: http://www.thestate.com/2013/04/18/2728745/fostering-a-film-culture.html#storylink=cpy

Stories for Change: expanding access to the arts for newcomers and older adults

Newcomers and older adults are two of the fastest growing populations, and communities across the country are grappling with a demographic makeup that is increasingly diverse and proportionally older than in the past. Arts and cultural organizations have the opportunity to reach out, to increase resources in the community and to engage populations that are at risk for being overlooked. Stories for Change, a report by Partners for Livable Communities, offers nearly 50 examples of how many types of organizations have increased access to arts and culture for older adult Stories for Changeand immigrant populations. Included are best practices implemented by museums, libraries, community development organizations, theaters, orchestras, dance ensembles, universities and more. These organizations are located in rural, mid-size and metropolitan settings, and many of the strategies can be easily implemented without a major overhaul of staffing, operations or an organization’s mission. The report includes the well-known Alzheimer’s Project of the Museum of Modern Art, which has been adapted to museums around the country, and Circle of Care, a unique ride-share program that partners young people with older adults to attend free arts performances in Boulder, Colorado. Stories of Change is available as a free download from Partners for Livable Communities' website. Via: Partners for Livable Communities