By Tara Barnwell
This year, Glimmerglass Film Days is offering five days of independent films, filmmaker talks, art, parties, live music and events. The films will be screened at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Fenimore Art Museum, The Farmers’ Museum, Templeton Hall and the Cooperstown Village Hall.
“Connection is the theme this year,” Ellen Pope, executive director of Otsego 2000, said. “After two years of the pandemic and social isolation, we thought a lot about what the theme should be. The film festival used to be about not just great films but the social and human connection of watching films together. We didn’t have that for two years, so we wanted to focus on how important connection is—the human connection, connecting the dots between humans and climate and nature.”
“This year we started a submission process on Film Freeway. It’s a database where filmmakers can put their films out there for festivals to review and hopefully choose,” Pope said.
“We got 1,000 films submitted from all around the world through the Film Freeway process. The submissions were from all genres. We got some shorts from these submissions. A short is a film that is usually less than 40 minutes,” Pope explained.
According to Pope, the film selection process is complex.
“Peggy Parsons, artistic director, is very attuned to all of the different festivals that we would select films from and that would be appropriate for our festival,” Pope said. “She’s been scouting films for this year.”
“Joey Katz, our programmer, is also involved in the selection process. He brings a different, eclectic feel. We think there will be something for everyone this year. Peggy and Joey are really the experts at seeking out the films, she added.
This year will also bring 17 or 18 special guests to the festival.
“They are filmmakers, directors, producers—some are people that actually appear in the films,” Pope said. “We’ll have live musicians as well. We’re excited that locals will be performing; Evan Jagels and his partner, Nicole Brancato, who formed the group Duo Extenpore, will be scoring a piece that is put together with baseball clips.”
“We will watch the silent film once to get a loose idea of the film. But then it’s completely improvised, performed live with an audience that is there to watch the movie,” Jagels said. “This is our first live scoring of a film; we’ll be interpreting space through improvised music. We’re excited and would like to do more with film.”
There are 28 films slated to run during Glimmerglass Film Days this year.
“This is about the same as years past. It depends on how long the films are,” Pope continued. “This year we have a couple of longer films. All of this has an impact on how we set the schedule.”
Organizers know it can be difficult sitting in front of a screen for five days, so they have some outdoor activities planned as well.
“Our connection to the community is strong; we have great partnerships. There are free guided walks scheduled and these will be led by Otsego County Conservation Association, the Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society, Otsego 2000, Dr. Cindy Falk, the Otsego Land Trust and the Susquehanna Chapter of the Adirondack Mountain Club,” Pope said.
The 2022 Glimmerglass Film Days runs from November 10-14. For a complete schedule of films and activities, go to www.otsego2000.org.