Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival (BFMAF) is based in England’s most northerly town, Berwick-upon-Tweed, in rural north Northumberland and on the borders of Scotland.
BFMAF is continually inspired by its coastal location and the Berwick-upon-Tweed community lies at the heart of the festival’s activities and events programming. Each year BFMAF organises workshops and events within the community to share local cinematic experiences.
For the 2021 Festival, BFMAF is excited to be able to host a small amount of screenings in-person back in its hometown, Berwick-upon-Tweed.
To open last year’s festival, BAFTA-winning sound recordist Chris Watson live mixed new Berwick-based recordings—taken by Martin Parker in Berwick at night time. Watson’s mix is based on the sound he made for Luke Fowler’s film Enceindre which premiered in Berwick in 2018. He was joined by BFMAF’s Director Peter Taylor to introduce the piece.
In its 16th edition, the Festival presented a new short film, Everyday Apocalypse, made by four local young people, remotely from their homes, alongside artist Kimberley O’Neill. The young people went outdoors with their cameras to document life in lockdown in Berwick-upon-Tweed and their film will be screened online during the festival this autumn.
In 2020, BFMAF also announced its new Early Career Critics Workshop for eight writers to participate from the North of England and Scotland. The Berwick Early Career Critics worked with BFMAF 2019 Associate Programmer Tendai Mutambu and took part in three online workshops, followed by the invitation to write a film review during the festival, which was featured as a publication on the BFMAF website.
Each year the Festival also works with local schools to deliver a school screening programme at The Maltings. Last year, BFMAF facilitated an online screening platform to allow local schools to screen a variety of short films in their classrooms accompanied by worksheets to support critical learning.