The first Falcon Media Festival celebrated videos, animations and other digital media creations by dozens of Fulmore Middle School students on May 21, 2011, an event made possible by support from the Austin Film Society, Alamo Draft House, school administrators, parents and other supporters.
The red carpet rolled out from 9 a.m.-noon at Alamo Draft House, 1120 South Lamar. News outlets were encouraged to come cover the festival, but, due to limited space the event was not open to the public. Fulmore students, parents and friends filled the theater.
Students from grades 6-8 (ages 11-13) entered videos or digital projects, some made specifically for the festival, others completed for various classes. Examples included Eat Insects Day, a short video showing how students faced their food fears and enjoyed unusual fare during a philosophy class lesson on food and cultures. The student video Zombies plumbs a perennial pop culture favorite, showing an army of middle schoolers lurching menacingly across the playground. (You can see these and other student works on the Falcon Media Network on YouTube.)
The festival screened entries in a series of categories, punctuated by live performances, including: ANIMATIONS, ICKY & GORY, DOCUMENTARIES, HALFTIME SHOW (live music by Fulmore 8th graders Bomani & Zaiden, a live-action comic book performance by students Clair & Gracie, and a live BeatBox performance by former Fulmore student Damon), SOCIAL AWARENESS, and IPHONE/IPOD TOUCH-MADE MEDIA.
The festival was made possible through generous parent and community support via event planning, donated computers and help with service/repair, as well as Fulmore administrator support. In addition, there has been ongoing instructional and technical assistance from the Austin Film Society, through the After School Films Classes program taught by Jonny Stranger. Video and Mac technician Ben Vargas also volunteered many hours for the after school program. Sponsor Alamo Draft House provided the festival venue.
The Austin American Statesman covered the event.