Thursday, October 11, 2007

Life is a Kabaret, old chum

Tonight is the kick-off for the Wis-Kino Fall Kabaret, a 48-hour short film making challenge that's open to anyone and everyone who has any interest whatsoever. It's also Wis-Kino's 5th year anniversary, which is a fairly mighty achievement for a loosely run collective of artists.

If you've never participated in a Kabaret, I highly recommend checking it out. Doesn't matter if you just want to watch the films that get made or if you want to help out but don't think you have any qualifications. Just by showing up at tonight's screening and letting it be known that you're interested in helping, there's a good chance that one of the various teams of film makers will pick you up. You can do anything from acting, editing, location scouting, making music, holding a boom mike or just doing grip work.

Tonight's screening is one of the group's regular monthly meetings at Escape Java Joint where anyone can bring in a short film (5 minutes or under) to show, with an optional theme of "Scary/Halloween." I happen to have the inside scoop on at least one of the films to be screened tonight: a full-length trailer for the upcoming independent horror-musical-comedy, "Massacre: The Musical." Sure, I was involved with the actual project, but I'm being totally objective when I say that it's completely awesome.

At the end of tonight's screening, a "secret ingredient" will be revealed which all film makers have to incorporate into their Kabaret submissions in some way. They then have until 7PM Saturday night to make those films, which will be shown on the big screen over at Westgate Art Cinemas.

I wrote a full preview article about the event over at TDP, and will be keeping a running account of the experience which will also be published there at week's end.

In another piece of very cool local arts news, a group of dancers called Crushin' All Forces, made up of students from all of the area's high schools (and one middle school) just took first place on BET's "106 & Park Wild-Out Wednesdays." It's a competition in hip-hop dancing that airs nationally, and now the Madison group gets to go on to compete in the finals early next year. Many congrats to the group and all their supporters both for creating something amazing and for showing the country a little of what Wisconsin has to offer.

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