One of the primary events that the F3 committee looks forward to each year is the Opening Night AfterParty. This event is usually, as the name suggests, opening night. It’s upstairs at Brewer’s Alley. And it’s a great event with beverages, food, music, and milling about. This year, the great Hard Swimmin’ Fish will be providing the musical entertainment…and if you’ve ever seen them, you know how they make a great party even greater.
The committee usually likes it because it means the most anticipated and the most dreaded day of the festival…OPENING DAY…is over. Chances are everyone survived. Any hurdles were successfully overcome. All the filmmakers made it ok (the ones who had films that screened on Friday and those that have films the rest of the weekend). And the committee members’ heart rates, blood pressures, and respiratory patterns have returned (more or less) to normal.
The reward for making it through this most stressful of festival days is a great, casual event overflowing with not only Brewer’s Alley food and drink, but audience members, committee members, and filmmakers. All are together in the two rooms rubbing elbows, mingling, schmoozing, and other innocuous activities that sound vaguely euphemistic.
Into the mix, overlain like a John Williams score, is a roomful of live, upbeat music.
It’s more than any unpaid committee-member could legitimately wish for.
Folks often ask, “Why is tonight such a relief? Don’t you have the rest of the festival to worry about?”
The very short and sweet answer to that is “no.” Once it starts, the rest of the festival is going to happen no matter what. Once that machinery is in place and started, the clock ticks on it’s own…it may need some help here or there, but if we’ve wound the watch, it’s keeping time. It’s that first setting into motion thing we all fret and bother about.
So seeing everyone together at the end of that first night…upstairs at Brewer’s Alley…we get to ask attendees how it seemed to go. We get to actually talk with filmmakers about real stuff, and not about screening logistics. We get to speak normally to other committee members that we’ve been barking at for the last half year. We get to discuss movies…which was kind of what brought us all together to do a film festival in the first place.
That Opening Night Afterparty could only be better if all the attendees were there. If you have a Opening Day or Weekend pass to the F3, that’s the only ticket you need. Head down to Brewer’s Alley after the last show, Led Zeppelin Played Here, on Friday night, June 28th, go upstairs, flash your pass, and enjoy.
Look for the most relaxed people there, and then come up and say hello to us.