• Opening Gala

Friday, March 1st, 2019

2019 Gala Event

The Empire Theatre

The 8th annual Belleville Downtown DocFest, kicks off Friday, March 1, 2019 with the much anticipated Opening Gala, at the Empire Theatre. We will be screening the critically-acclaimed Gurrumul. A film that documents the life and legacy of one of Australia’s most celebrated musicians: Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunpingu. Filmed over the course of ten years, Director Paul Williams offers a rare insight into the rich and complex Yolngu culture and ceremonial world that inspired the musician from the community of Galiwin’ku on Elcho Island just off the North East Coast of Australia.

Performing after the Gala screening of Gaurrumul we are pleased to present multi-nominated and award winning Logan Staats, winner of the new TV show “The Launch”. Logan’s haunting and distinct voice has won him multiple opportunities to share the stage with acts like Buffy Sainte-Marie, Keith Secola and Mumford and Sons, to name a few. Born on the Six Nations Reserve and raised in the small town of Brantford, Ontario, Logan’s live performances are juxtaposed by a level of self-possession and control that still wildly careen through emotions of sadness, hope, longing and joy.

Proudly Presented by:

Pretsell Davies Thompson Benton logo

Docfest’s Gala sponsor since our first year. Our sincerest thanks for the continuous support.

6pm

Green Carpet
Reception

About

Be sure to join DocFest’s resident celebrity interviewer, Dug Stevenson, on the Green Carpet as he interviews local filmmakers, dignitaries and other VIPs as they file in to the Opening Gala. Recorded live by TV Cogeco Belleville, the Green Carpet gives filmmakers a chance to discuss their work,  local politicians a chance to connect with the community and the Festival an opportunity to reach an expanded new audience.

7pm

Gurrumul

  • Director Paul Williams
  • 2018
  • 96 min

Description

Celebrated by audiences at home and abroad, indigenous artist Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu was one of the most important and acclaimed voices to ever come out of Australia. Blind from birth, he found purpose and meaning through songs and music inspired by his community and country on Elcho Island in far North East Arnhem Land. Living a traditional Yolngu life, his breakthrough album ‘Gurrumul’ brought him to a crossroads as audiences and artists around the world began to embrace his music.

GURRUMUL is a portrait of an artist on the brink of global reverence, and the struggles he and those closest to him faced in balancing that which mattered most to him and keeping the show on the road.

9pm

Logan Staats

Logan Staats performing The Lucky Ones on The Launch. (C) 2018 Bell Media, Inc. & Big Machine Label Group, LLC

Logan Staats

Born on Six Nations of the Grand River and raised in the small town of Brantford, Ontario, Logan Staats started writing and performing music in his early teens. His haunting and distinct voice has won him multiple opportunities to share the stage with acts like Buffy Sainte-Marie, Keith Secola and Mumford and Sons, to name a few. His live performances feature a level of self-possession and control that wildly careen through emotions of sadness, hope, longing and joy.