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Yerevan, Armenia: Outdoor Movies Are the Crowning Event of the Golden Apricot Film Festival in Yerevan, Armenia
by Caleb Mitchell
Yesterday was the opening of the Golden Apricot Intn'l Film Festival. It was all outdoors, and was in Armenian (though some people had translation headphones I understand). The show (as it seems appropriate to call it) was a bit strange to me, with mimes, a blessing by an Archbishop with his crew, the Minister of Justice (Hasmik, a woman) being precariously whisked up and down a steep slippery ramp to talk. The fireworks were nice (as you can see) since they really lit up the Opera house, and then the outdoor movie screening that followed was nice (there was an indoor one for the VIPs), though again, only if you speak Italian or can read Armenian subtitles really fast.
History of the Golden Apricot Film Festival in Yerevan, Armenia
Annual International Film Festival GOLDEN APRICOT was established in 2004 in Yerevan, the capital of the Republic of Armenia, by the Golden Apricot Fund for Cinema Development, the Armenian Association of Film Critics and Cinema Journalists, supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Armenia, the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Armenia and Benevolent Fund for Cultural Development. Internationally acclaimed Canadian-Armenian director Atom Egoyan was named President of the festival since 2005. The festival includes many themes and events, including outdoor movies.
The Golden Apricot International Film Festival carries the theme Crossroads of Cultures and Civilizations. The title may well serve as our impassioned mantra for building cultural bridges and fostering dialogue. It also reflects the history of Armenia itself, which for millennia has existed as a flash point for competing geopolitical forces. Armenia's desirable geographic position has made it into a bone of contention for various empires, but has, on the other hand, resulted in a civilization replete with world influences and a dynamic arts heritage. We welcome films representing diverse ethnic groups, religions, and nations that depict the human experience, the daily lives of people, ordinary and extraordinary, their troubles and their joys, as they try to find meaning in a changing world; as they struggle to redefine themselves in a world that recognizes fewer and fewer boundaries.