The 3rd Port Townsend Dance Film Festival

The 3rd Port Townsend Dance Film Festival

UPDATE: Due to concerns about COVID-19, we have chosen to reschedule the Dance Film Festival for later in the year. We will keep you posted about dates when we have more information. If you have already purchased tickets or passes to this year's festival, contact us at (360) 385-1039 or rocky@rosetheatre.com for a refund.

Individual tickets ($12) to all eleven programs will be available beginning Monday, March 2nd.

Series passes ($120), and discounted passes for Rose Theatre members ($100) will be available only at the box office, beginning the same day. 

This year’s festival, curated by Rose Theatre owner Rocky Friedman, is almost exclusively a selection of films - short and feature-length - from the 2019 San Francisco Dance Film Festival. In its tenth year, the SFDFF received a record number of submissions from 41 countries. From that nine-day event, Friedman has curated a three-day program, highlighting eight feature films and twenty-five short films – both documentary and narrative – from around the globe.

“Since the marriage of dance and film seems to be blossoming exponentially, the challenge isn’t finding enough films, but whittling it down to the best-of-the-best, and creating a dynamic program that juxtaposes dance styles, music, and story lines within the context of a film,” says Friedman. “This year’s programming was probably the most challenging I’ve ever contended with,” he adds. “Which is say, I’m even far more excited about this year’s program than the previous two festivals.”

The opening night film will be Queen + Bejart: Ballet for Life, which had its North American premiere in San Francisco. Ballet for Life was a unique collaboration between three huge cultural brands: Queen, Versace, and visionary choreographer Maurice Béjart. At is heart is the loss of two legendary performers, Freddie Mercury and dancer Jorge Donn, both of who died of AIDS in the early 1990s. The closing night film will be the new release Cunningham, a breathtaking explosion of dance and music that traces Merce Cunningham’s artistic evolution over three decades (1944-1972), to his eventual emergence as one of the world’s most visionary choreographers.

Between opening and closing night is a veritable garden of artistic expression and excellence in dance, from France, Hungary, Iran, India, Slovenia, Netherlands, Columbia, the U.K., U.S., Canada and Germany.

Asked if he had any personal favorites in the festival, Friedman said, “There are so many great ones, and they are all so different that it’s hard to choose. I will say that one of my favorite films is only 90 seconds long. I’ve probably watched it 15 times. And at only 90 seconds, that’s doable.”

Series Selections

Upcoming Series Selections


Past Series Selections

Cunningham

Cunningham

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: This beautiful documentary traces Merce Cunningham's artistic evolution over three decades of risk and discovery, from his early years as a struggling dancer in New York to his emergence as one of the world’s most visionary choreographers. The film weaves Merce's philosophies and stories, creating a visceral journey into his innovative work. A breathtaking explosion of dance, music, and never-before-seen archival material. PG, 93 min.


Dance Shorts: Program B

Dance Shorts: Program B

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Our second line-up of wonderful short dance films includes THE KING OF TWIRL, about the 11-year old Janero. He can't sit still, he's alway dancing. He wants to prove himself and be the best in twirl, a sport that's traditionally just for girls. Janero is the only boy of his age in Northern Netherlands who competes in this sport.


Les Ballets de Monte Carlo

Les Ballets de Monte Carlo

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Choreographer Nacho Duato composed the one-act ballet White Darkness as a requiem for his sister. The result is a masterpiece which, according to critics, has reached heights deemed hitherto impossible on the landscape of modern arts. In contrast, Joseph Hernandez creates an exhilarating aesthetic universe in The Lavender Follies. 76 min.


Dance Is Its Own Liberation: From Mindfulness to Macabre

Dance Is Its Own Liberation: From Mindfulness to Macabre

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Three eclectic dance films that as a trio evoke the endless power of the art form including the world renowned HOFESH SCHECHTER'S CLOWNS, a macabre comedy of murder and desire, asking how far will we go in the name of entertainment. Exhilarating choreography combined with a percussive score. 60 min.


Fire and Ashes: Making the Ballet RAkU
Rose Theatre

Fire and Ashes: Making the Ballet RAkU

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Raku pottery prizes spontaneity in the interaction of fire and falling ashes, and this stunning documentary captures the beauty of both traditional Japanese pottery and the novel The Golden Temple by Japanese author Mishima. 64 min.


Lil Buck: Real Swan

Lil Buck: Real Swan

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Returning home to south Memphis, where he first learned to dance, Lil Buck recounts his personal journey and offers his hometown youth a chance at a better future. 85 min.


Dance Shorts: Program A

Dance Shorts: Program A

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: A collection of 11 stirring and at times breathtaking short films about dance and dancers of all kinds, from Hungary, the Netherlands, Slovenia and more. Let yourself be surprised! 59 min.


Four Choreographers of Our Time at the Paris Opera: Thierrée/Schecter/Pérez/Pite

Four Choreographers of Our Time at the Paris Opera: Thierrée/Schecter/Pérez/Pite

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: To open the evening James Thierrée takes over the public areas of the Palais Garnier and introduces us to his dream-like world. Israel's Hofesh Schecter (Hofesh Schecter's Clowns), often lauded for his trance-evoking dances, offers a new version of The Art of Not Looking Back. Spain's Ivan Pérez occupies the stage of the Opera for the first time with a creation for ten male dancers. And Crystal Pite (Betroffenheit) returns with The Seasons' Cannon, a dazzling creation from 2016.


Betroffenheit

Betroffenheit

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: A riveting, tender-hearted exploration of loss, isolation, and survival in the aftermath of a life-altering tragedy. The result is a genre-defying work of dance theatre that has stunned critics and audiences worldwide. 


Répétition(s)

Répétition(s)

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: Aurélie Dupont from France and Diana Vishneva from Russia, allow a rare glimpse as they embrace the challenge of having one week to rehearse choreographer Ohad Naharin's B/olero in the Tel Aviv studio of Batsheva Dance Company. The camera closely observes their process, capturing their strengths and vulnerabilities while absorbing the essence of the work. 45 min. Preceded by MEMORIES OF BODIES IN MOTION. Directed by Thomas Lallier, France, 2018, 10 min.


Queen + Bejart: Ballet for Life

Queen + Bejart: Ballet for Life

Port Townsend Dance Film Festival: A unique collaboration between three cultural brands: Queen, Versace, and the visionary choreographer Maurice Béjart. At its heart is the loss of two legendary performers, Freddie Mercury and dancer Jorge Donn, both of whom died of AIDS in the early 1990s.