From Telluride to Singapore: the film festival is back

Next week students will have the vicarious thrill of experiencing what it’s like to surf in Morocco, take a trip to the Himalayas or become a conservationist on Rabbit Island.

The Telluride Mountain Film Festival is back at the Singapore American School for its second year with over 12 different short films which will be screened over the course of two days – Monday, April 18 and Tuesday, April 19. The specially curated films for high school students offer a diverse range of genres and themes, from films about disabilities in Africa to a water conservation project  in Colorado.

The Town of Telluride (Creative Common license)

The Telluride Mountain Film Festival was founded in 1979 in Telluride, Colorado, with the intent of showcasing stories through film about the environment, culture, climbing, political and social justice matters. A celebration of world class athletes, change makers and visionary artists, Telluride Mountain film aims to bring that same spirit right here to our school.

The Entwistle family, who have a student in the high school and a 35 year history and relationship with the town of Telluride, jumped at the chance to bring this unique event to the Singapore American School. Mr. Helmer, high school librarian, believes this event is an amazing opportunity to see a wide selection of high quality films that relate to a variety of classes.

Mr. Helmer said that these films, while not specifically focused on individual classes, celebrate the power of film art ideas to create a better world, and this idea runs parallel to the school’s mission of cultivating open thinkers and world leaders.

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“Delta Dawn” will be screened at the Film Festival on April 18 and 19. Photo from the Telluride Film Festival website.

While last year’s festival proved to be a success with over 600 students in the elementary, middle and high school participating in the event, this year, coordinator Bob Helmer expects an even greater turnout.

“This time of the year is extremely stressful, especially for high school student. With all the APs and tests going around, we hope students will take this opportunity as another means of relaxation during their free period.”

While last year’s festival was fairly structured with specific viewing times, this year Mr. Helmer wanted to incorporate a more flexible schedule to promote greater participation. “This year we decided to go with looping the films in the IT theater with the possibility of opening up another classroom rather than scheduled time slots for teachers and students to come in,” he said.

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“I Am Able” will be screened at the film festival (Photo from Telluride Mountain Film Festival)

Senior Mark Schoen watched the film festival last year. “It was a really good learning experience. The films really gave me a new perspective and insight into places in the world and activities I would not necessarily do myself,” he said.

On the April 18, the viewings will go from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on April 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the high school iTheater.

Author: Christopher Chan

Christopher Chan is a first year reporter for The Eye and has been at SAS since his freshman year. Now a senior, Chris enjoys filming, photographing and sending songs to Mina Mayo-Smith. When not making movies or writing stories for The Eye, Chris can be found watching Manchester United win, ordering take-out from the American Club or pretending to work out at the gym. Chris can be contacted at

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