A pianist plays recognisable cinematic scores as dignitaries and artisans gather at the launch of York’s first festival celebrating short form film.
The Aesthetica Short Film Festival, running for four days in the historic city, shines a spotlight on the short. Cherie Federico, Festival Director and Editor of the magazine whose name is attached to the event, describes the inaugural occasion as; “…an opportunity to watch emerging film-makers, really exciting cinema, but also the chance to experience this beautiful city in which we live.”
These are views affirmed by another curator of the festival, York St John University. Deputy Vice Chancellor, David Maughan Brown, adds: “It’s great to have such a superb resource as this on our doorstep, providing access to the very best short films.
The lights dim as four hand-picked short films are screened: ‘The Romantic Killer’ (2011, dir. Phillip Berg), a Danish mystery with a twist; ‘Buriganga’ (2010, dir. Michelle Coomber), a documentary centring on the main river in the Bangladeshi capital city of Dhaka; ‘The Light of Family Burnam’ (2008, dir. Marshall Axani), an emotional story on a family coping with an impending death; and ‘Silent Things’ (2010, dir. Rob Brown), a British short dealing with a man with Asperger’s Syndrome.
The evening concludes with a set by Edinburgh trio Found, whose eleven songs are infused with cinema-esque elements. Tommy Perman, the band’s bassist, offers his perspective, “We’re all massive film fans, we certainly respect film music.”
“Because of our interest in film in an art form, it’s natural it will leak into our composition,” Perman adds, “You can hear a kind of atmospheric, particularly in the more instrumental sections.”
The Aesthetica Short Film Festival runs until November 6 at various locations across York. An events programme is available to download on the festival website.