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FIFTH WALL FEST, the Philippines first festival specializing in dance film, returns this October 8 to 17

By CREATE Philippines
October 06, 2021

“Still - It Will Be A Disconcerted Day In A Starless Moonless Night”

After a successful pilot run last year, FIFTH WALL FEST is pushing through with their second edition this year, taking place between October 8 and 17. 

Established last year, FIFTH WALL FEST is the country’s first international platform for dance film, providing a space for both visibility in and education on dance and the performing arts. The “fifth wall” is the imaginary barrier guests pass upon leaving a cultural experience and into everyday life. Thus, the FIFTH WALL FEST revolves around “the idea of moving beyond the fifth wall in the hopes of reaching out to audiences, old and new, for a boundless celebration of dance from all angles,” according to their press release. 

The ten-day festival consists of over fifty dance films from all over the world, selectively curated by a diverse panel, including Nonoy Froilan, former principal dancer of Ballet Philippines and Filipina filmmaker and professor Sari Dalena.

The panel also includes a line-up of international judges, such as Canadian dance film creator and curator Kelly Hargraves; writer, researcher and curator Choi Sin Yi Emilie from Hong Kong, and Indian filmmaker Sumedha Bhattacharyya. 

Among those films to be featured during the festival includes a curatorial selection of Filipino dance films created by Filipinos across the globe - “creations that mimic the pattern of the land.” A selection of archival films on a Japanese theater movement called Butoh will also be screened, in support of the Japan Foundation Manila and in partnership with Dance and Media Japan. A roster of international films from Sweden, Hong Kong, England, and Scotland will also be featured, plus the winners and finalists of this year’s FIFTH WALL FEST Competition.

This year’s edition of FIFTH WALL FEST also includes its Black Box events - talks and workshops that bridge dialogue between intersecting artistic disciplines. This includes a season on dance filmmaking and methods, a crash course into Japanese butoh and “dance through a documentary lens” with director Patrick Alcedo. 

“We are looking forward to introducing another year of isolated and explorative performance,” says Madge Reyes, founder and director of FIFTH WALL FEST. “FIFTH WALL FEST was birthed for traversing across barriers and motions. Last year, we found ourselves grasping for new ways to consume visual imagery and movement. This year, we’re doing the same, however, embedding something more experiential—this time, teasing the different senses, and not just the eyes.”

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