Filmmaker Mariam Ghani to Screen Rare Afghan Films at EMPAC [Berkshire on Stage]

April 24th, 2017, 1:30 pm by Sara

A 7pm tonight (Monday, April 24), artist Mariam Ghani will present a selection of rare films produced between 1978-1991 from the Afghan Film Archive at EMPAC at RPI in Troy.

What We Left Unfinished is Ghani’s long-term research and film project.

Working in the dual role of artist and historian, Ghani describes the project as “centered around five unfinished Afghan feature films shot, but never edited, between 1978 and 1992: years that encompass the Afghan Communist coup d’état, attempted reforms that met bitter rural resistance, a series of internal purges and assassinations, the Soviet invasion and withdrawal, a five-year attempt at national reconciliation, the handover of power to a mujahidin coalition, and finally dissolution into civil war.

“From the unfinished films commissioned, produced and canceled by various iterations of the Afghan state, in various moments of the Afghan Communist project, we can reconstruct not the truths, precisely, of how the state existed and acted in those moments, but rather its most important fictions: its desires and fears, ambitions and ghosts. In the imaginary presented by most finished films of the period, we see the ideal People’s Democratic Republic that could have been, but wasn’t; in the unfinished films, the reality–a utopian project secured by violent force–lingers like a shadow, just barely concealed behind allegories and codes. The world around the films, where filmmaking itself was a dangerous enterprise, seeps into the world onscreen.”

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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FEST: Festival Cinema Invisible’s International Film Fest @ Proctors This Weekend

April 19th, 2017, 2:00 pm by Greg

Festival Cinema Invisible’s International Film Festival is the only upstate New York film festival that showcases films exclusively from and about the Middle East and Northern Africa. The sixth annual celebration brings together cinema enthusiasts and filmmakers to discover the best “invisible cinema.”

Held at Proctors’ GE Theatre in Schenectady from 10am-9pm on Saturday (April 22) and 10am-7pm on Sunday (April 23), the festival will screen 58 feature-length and short films selected from more than 1,450 submissions representing nearly 100 countries, including Afghanistan, Belgium, Egypt, Germany, Iraq, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Pakistan, Poland and the United States.

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MASS MoCA Announces Summer Season of Concerts & More

April 19th, 2017, 9:00 am by Greg
Booker T. Jones

Memphis soul great Booker T. Jones heads to MASS MoCA

Photograph by Ed Conway

In North Adams, the already massive MASS MoCA is about to double its gallery space with the Sunday, May 28 grand opening of the 130,000 square foot Building 6, featuring major new exhibitions and installations by James Turrell, Laurie Anderson, Jenny Holzer, Robert Rauschenberg, Sol LeWitt and more.

And MASS MoCA is also expanding its performance offerings for the upcoming summer season. The museum has previously announced a number of high wattage performances – including outdoor concerts by the rock band Cake (Sunday, May 28) and My Morning Jacket (Saturday, August 12), as well as the return of the big multi-day music festivals Solid Sound (June 23-25) and FreshGrass (September 15-17), but now they’ve upped the ante with a summer-long schedule of concerts, films, theater, a dance party and lots more.

Tickets for the newly announced events are now on sale, and if you purchase tickets by Wednesday, May 3, the early-bird price includes a 25% discount.

Here’s the schedule of newly announced performance events for MASS MoCA’s 2017 summer season:

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FILM: “Some Kind of Joy” Profiles Architecture Firm That Designed EMPAC [Berkshire on Stage]

March 27th, 2017, 2:00 pm by Sara

In 2001, Sir Nicholas Grimshaw and his practice won the architectural competition for the design of EMPAC at RPI in Troy. Throughout the building’s construction, the collaboration between Grimshaw Architects (now just Grimshaw) and RPI was very close in all details of this extraordinary project.

Tonight (Monday, March 27) EMPAC and the Rensselaer School of Architecture will screen the new documentary Some Kind of Joy: The Inside Story of Grimshaw in Twelve Buildings at 6pm in the EMPAC Theater. Admission is free. The film will be introduced by Grimshaw partner William Horgan, who was the lead project architect for EMPAC.

The Palace Theatre Announces New Show

March 15th, 2017, 10:11 am by Greg

Jeff Strange (Donnybrook Fair) and Jimmy Kelly (the Jimmy Kelly Band) have teamed up to write Find Your Way Home, an Irish musical stage drama, which had its world premiere at Dublin, Ireland’s Civic Theatre in November.

Now folks in Greater Nippertown will have a chance to get their first peek of the show. Albany’s Palace Theatre will be screening the first act of the musical – filmed at the world premiere – at 4pm on Sunday, March 26.

In addition to the screening, the Palace event will also feature a Q&A with Strange and Kelly, as well as live musical performances by the New McKrells, Ronan Tynan (the Irish Tenors), Alex Sharpe (Celtic Woman) and Andy Cooney.

Tickets are $25; $65 for VIP tickets including a pre-show meet-and-greet with the performers and writers over tea and Irish scones beginning at 2pm.

PS: You can also catch Jeff Strange teaming up with his old Donnybrook Fair bandmate Kevin McKrell in concert at the Parting Glass in Saratoga Springs at 7pm tonight (Wednesday, March 15).

“As You Are” Opens Today @ the Spectrum 8 Theatres

March 3rd, 2017, 1:30 pm by Greg

Back to where it all began…

“As You Are,” the dramatic coming of age movie directed and co-written by Albany native Miles Joris-Peyrafitte and filmed around Greater Nippertown, is having its Albany premiere today Friday (March 3) at the Landmark Spectrum 8 Theatres.

The Special Jury Award-winning film of the 2016 Sundance Film Festival – starring Owen Campbell (“Boardwalk Empire”), Charlie Heaton (“Stranger Things”) and Amandla Stenberg (“The Hunger Games”) – opens its week-long run today with a special 7pm benefit screening for Youth FX, the teen filmmaking program that helped during the Albany shoot.

Joris-Peyrafitte, co-writer Madison Harrison and producer Joseph Mastantuono (all Albany natives) will be joined by cast members Mary Stuart Masterson (“Benny & Joon,” “Fried Green Tomatoes,” “Some Kind of Wonderful”) and Owen Campbell (“The Americans,” “Boardwalk Empire”) for a Q&A session following the benefit screening.

“Watering the Flowers” Film Series Continues @ EMPAC at RPI [Berkshire on Stage]

March 1st, 2017, 2:00 pm by Sara

Tonight (Wednesday, March 1) EMPAC at RPI in Troy kicks off the second half of the Watering the Flowers film series, which will feature the work of EMPAC artists-in-residence throughout the Spring 2017 season.

Started in Fall 2016, Watering the Flowers takes its title from cinema pioneer Georges Méliès’ 1896 film of the same name, which was itself a copy of a Lumiere brothers film and was in turn endlessly copied and referenced by fellow filmmakers. In a similar way, this film series aims to “water the flowers” by allowing current artists-in-residence to screen the films that influence them.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

FREE: African-American Film Fest @ Crandall Library

February 6th, 2017, 1:30 pm by Greg

In conjunction with Black History Month, the Crandall Public Library’s Folklife Center in Glens Falls is hosting its 18th annual African-American Film Festival throughout February.

The four films will be screened at 6:30pm on Tuesdays, and admission is free. The series kicks off on Tuesday (February 7) with the Emmy Award-winning documentary “The Quiltmakers of Gee’s Bend.”

Here’s the schedule of films:

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