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March 30, 1984 - Image 18

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1984-03-30
Note:
This is a tabloid page

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.


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The National Student Video
Festival
The Michigan Media Center
The Michigan Theater
8 p.m., Friday & Saturday,
April 13 & 14
2 p.m., Sunday, April 15
By Bob King
T HE RISE of cable television; it gave
videos a hell of a push toward the
center stage of pop culture. Videos
have been around (as commercials and
such) for as long as television itself -
they just never really blossomed.
Then in '81 MTV burst into everyone's
house. Kids didn't want their milk and
cookies; whole dormatories disap-
peared into TV lounges; Rick
Springfield found something else he
couldn't do; every American suddenly
knew what a "video" was. With masive
publicity, not to mention money, the
video scene began to look like a world
populated by eccentric producers,
counterculture bands, and Califor-
nians.
But no more. In only two weeks will
be the very first National Student Video
Festival, right here in wholesome Ann
Arbor.
New York, San Francisco, and
Chicago have already put on similar
festivals, but their programs are

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Alec Friedman: Video Fest mastermind

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dominated by professional producers.
This is how Ann Arbor's VideoFest is
unique: Entries are limited to videos
by college graduate and undergraduate
students (this rule was modified
slightly to accomodate a very pleasing
development - read on). With the
NSVF Ann Arbor has entered the video
regime, and if our football team and
lawschool are any indication, it should
swing right to the top.
So who started this whole affair? The
NSVF is being staged by Michigan
Media, whose executive producer Alec
Friedman is, not coincidentally, the
Festival's director and major
motivating force. Friedman and his

associates conceived the idea of a
student video festival last August: nine
months later, no parallel intended, Ann
Arbor is witnessing the birth of the
National Student Video Festival.
In a couple senses, the VideoFest is
already a prenatal success.
Its first triumph is the incredible
amount of corporate support Friedman
and his group have solicited. The
NSVF's sponsor list reads like an
abridged version of the Fortune 500
(only a mild exageration), including
Sony, CBS-Fox, Allied Film and Video,
and Osgood Computing. Considering
the difficulty many established events
have getting sponsors, Michigan Media
can't be the only group enthused about
the Festival.
"Great," you say; "how do I
recognize all these sponsors?"
They're not there to be seen, dunce.
The purpose of a sponsor is to donate
prizes, which make it attractive for the
artiststo enter videos, which raises the
qualityof the festival.
NSVF sponsors have been very good
at donating: Cash prizes range from
$250 for 5th place to $1,500 for 1st. Then
sponsors have also arranged to fly in
the five winners for the awards presen-
tation, and the Ann Arbor Inn is sup-
plying rooms and accomodations. And
there's the exposure: Allied and CBS-
Fox will shuttle the winners to and from
their South-eastern studios for tours, in-
troductions, and future professional
connections. Even national exposure:
The national USA and Campus Cable
networks will broadcast the winning
videos (to save some money - keep
reading).
NSVF's second success has been its
spectacular number of entries: A total
of 101 videos, ranging from rock videos
to magazine segments to experimental
works were received from 25 states.
Not even the New York or Frisco fests
had such a response their first year.
"The others got around 50-100 videos
the first time," explains Friedman,
"with lots of advertising." NSVF
broke a hundred merely by sending out
posters.
Michigan has the most entries (40),
followed by California and New "York.
The big surprise, and the reason for

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6 Weekend/Friday, March 30, 1984

:- 35 Week

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