When amateurs take over the event

  • 2007-08-01
  • By Talis Saule Archdeacon

STUMPED: Last year's HipHopHouse synthesizer lay down beats that budding hip hop artists could attempt to free style over.

RIGA - For all of you out there who consider yourselves decent amateur photographers, musicians or athletes, now is your time to shine. The third annual Amateur Video Festival is gearing up and looking for people to submit pictures, sing songs, help set up the event and generally participate in the festival's "four days of sun, music, sport games and video."

Unlike most summertime festivals, the AVF is non-commercial and all about the art. Organizers don't charge an entrance fee and rely on what they call "open source, do it yourself" ideas 's where the participants themselves submit content 's to make the festival work. It's an idea that's taking hold all around the world, and similar events can be found everywhere from Argentina to Japan.
The main events of the AVF will take place from Aug. 16 to 19 in the southwestern Latvian city of Skrunda, which is in the Kuldiga district about halfway between Riga and Liepaja.
The festival will primarily focus on amateur films covering a wide range of topics. Unfortunately it's too late for any more budding young directors to get in on the action as all the films have already been submitted and are currently being reviewed by a panel of international judges.

It is not too late, however, for up and coming photographers and musicians to take part in the event. Ten bands have already registered, including local stars such as "Butter in Fly," who have recently released their first album. Other local talent registered to play includes bands like "Trakmenes," "Nimfa" and "In The Box," all of whom play mostly energetic alternative punk music. Any bands interested in taking part in the event can register with Aivars Lauzis at lauzis@inbox.lv.

In addition to the punk bands that are playing, there will be a HipHopHouse which will be open to everyone. The HipHopHouse will not only feature people with pre-written songs, they will also allow freestyle songs over beats they have prepared. Anyone who wants to participate in the HipHopHouse can get more information by e-mailing lienebriede@inbox.lv.
Festival organizers are also looking for talented photographers whose "camera has seen something valuable of sharing with the others." Those interested in submitting pictures for one of the galleries should get in touch with Inese Reipa at reipainese@yahoo.de.

The organizers are also hoping that people will get involved much sooner than the actual festival and are looking for volunteers to help set up from Aug. 2 to 5. Those interested in helping with the preparations can contact either Reipa or Lauzis.

Amateur Video Festival
Skrunda
Aug. 16 - 19
www.a-video.lv