Festivals, Cultural and City Events

Film Festival interview with Susan Kemp

Susan Kemp is the Co-Director of the MSc in Film, Exhibition and Curation at the University. Here she discusses the course and how she and her students were involved in the Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Film Festival party

What can people coming along to your event expect to see at this year's Edinburgh International Film Festival?

The students of Film, Exhibition & Curation at the University of Edinburgh have created a programme of short films drawn from the post graduate work of the UK film academies (National Film & Television School/ London Film School/ Scottish Screen Academy).

It’s always exciting to be present at the start of someone’s career, to feel that sense of personal discovery in the work of the filmmakers of the future. That’s what festivals offer to their audiences in many different forms but none are as effective as the short film programme in introducing new talent to enthusiastic audiences.

This particular short film programme ‘Growing Up, Getting By’ is a chance to enjoy a range of form, style and tone, all put together in a manner designed to engage, entertain and set an audience to thinking and talking.

Why is it important that students are involved?

Programming a short film programme is a very difficult and complex task, one which we use to develop the skills and critical thinking of the students of Film, Exhibition & Curation through a number of assignments over the year of study.

This event is part of the culmination of that learning, where the students have to deliver at a professional level to the public, and it is an enormous opportunity. It hones their own confidence in their judgement plus deepens their understanding of audiences more generally.

What have your students learned from being involved in this year’s Film Festival?

In addition to the professional skills required to deliver at this level the students have learned how to apply the theory to the real, and all that was revealed in that process has been extraordinarily fruitful in developing their scholarship, higher level thinking and overall enjoyment.

How does taking part in the Film Festival inspire you?

It is so necessary for the students to benefit from operating at a professional standard that I am constantly inspired by the investment of outside partners like the EIFF in encouraging the next generation of practitioners and thinkers.

Creative collaboration is a crucial tool in the arts and in film exhibition in particular. Ensuring the students have learned as much as they can to deliver requires a constantly renewed inspiration. This sort of event helps feed that.

What do you hope audiences can get out of coming to the Festival?

I hope they leave the cinema in a frenzy of discussion about film and the work they just watched.

Growing Up, Getting By on Film Festival website

MSc in Film, Exhibition and Curation

Susan Kemp