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IBMA goes to the movies

Tuesday, July 29, 2014 – Eight film projects, including two spotlighted feature films, were selected to kick off the inaugural IBMA Film Festival during the International Bluegrass Music Association's World of Bluegrass event, Sept. 30 - Oct. 4, in Raleigh, N.C.

"Banjo Romantika" by Lee Bidgood and Anna Schwaber's "The Porch Light Sessions" were singled out by the IBMA Film Festival Committee as projects that best represent the criteria of the film festival. The other films selected were "At the Feed & Seed" (April Janow), "The Cricket" (Andrew Cartoun), "G2- Mind Over Matter" (David Elfgren), "Herschel Sizemore: Mandolin in B" (Rick Bowman), "The History of Future Folk" (Jeremy Walker) and "The Tao of Bluegrass - A Portrait of Peter Rowan" (Christine Funk).

"We have several goals for the film festival: to introduce the bluegrass industry to new bluegrass-related films, to promote the creation of these films and then to provide a platform and a showcase for our members who have created these films," said Nancy Cardwell, Executive Director of IBMA. "We feel this will be a benefit not only to the filmmakers in our industry, but to the many bluegrass fans that attend World of Bluegrass."

IBMA's World of Bluegrass consists of the IBMA Business Conference, Sept. 30 - Oct. 2; the 25th Annual International Bluegrass Music Awards, scheduled for Thursday evening, Oct. 2; Wide Open Bluegrass, Oct. 3-4 (which includes both free stages and ticketed festival performances) and the Bluegrass Ramble, an innovative series of showcases, taking place Sept. 30 - Oct. 2 in downtown Raleigh and at the Raleigh Convention Center.

All eight films will have multiple showings on Oct. 3 and 4. The screenings - inside the Raleigh Convention Center, near the Bluegrass Expo Hall - are free and open to the public. Some filmmakers will attend the screenings, participating in "Q&A" sessions with the audience about their project.

Business Conference attendees will have the opportunity to view "Banjo Romantika" and "The Porch Light Sessions" earlier in the week, with an intro and Q&A session from the respective filmmakers.

"The first IBMA Film Festival will welcome bluegrass filmmakers to the mix of creative professionals at the World Of Bluegrass," said Michael Hall, IBMA Film Festival Committee Chair. "Films about bluegrass music history, culture, performers, and lifestyles help tell the bluegrass story to existing fans and new fans alike. These films are now beginning to reach beyond 'film' audiences to 'music' audiences and are an important developing area of bluegrass event programming. Thanks to the IBMA's staff and volunteers for supporting this new trend by introducing the films at the World Of Bluegrass."

Hall started the first bluegrass film festival in 2008 in the San Francisco Bay Area for the Northern California Bluegrass Society; the 8th annual NCBS Film Festival will be held in Redwood City in January 2015.

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