Horse power to fuel the 2017 Tryon International Film Festival

Yvonne Barteau - Into the SpotlightCurrently in its third year of operation, the Tryon International Film Festival (TRYON) has galvanized its mission to become one of the top film festival destinations in the world. The beauty of this lofty goal is that it’s entirely possible.
Spring-boarding the confidence of co-founders Kirk Gollwitzer and Beau Menetre began in 2016 with the premier of “American Epic” as a festival opener. Ticketholders were amazed to eyewitness a landmark documentary being kicked off in their own backyard with director Bernard MacMahon at the helm the entire time.
Soon after the festival, Tryon watched in awe as “American Epic” debuted on PBS television. Then the magic happened, when the film went on to be nominated for a Primetime EMMY® for Outstanding Musical Direction.
Just as Sundance and Cannes command respect at the very top of the festival wheel, the name “TRYON” rings like a bell and rolls beautifully off the tongue. The name itself sounds powerful, rich and visual, because where else in the world can you find a town so saturated with equestrian culture, artistic vitality and history then Tryon?
Filmmakers from around the world are now being overheard articulating the name “TRYON” in the news:
awards photo8Nepal based film director, Nischal Poudyal, a third-time presenter at TRYON was recently quoted as saying; “Tryon was the inception of my international filmmaking journey. Tryon will remain with me for the rest of my life!”
Director Steven Esteb said, “I love Tryon and love the people. I truly believe this film festival will be a top 50 festival very soon. (TRYON) is a class-act with amazing hospitality. I will never forget my time there—congratulations to you all.”
Past praise brings forth an impeccable trajectory to success for years to come. It also magnifies the name TRYON to the international film industry, and further demonstrates the immense power and reach of this unique festival.
Gollwitzer believes that the true measure of a film festival’s success is its ability to attract first-rate, world-class premieres each year and constantly realize an ever increasing sense of excitement in their audience base.
The 2017 – Year of the Horse
snowmanSoon after the 2016 festival ended the Polk County Film Initiative (PCFI) decided to dedicate the 2017 season to the respect and dignity of the horse. “Since we had already experienced major success with the 2015 premier of ‘Harry & Snowman’ we had confidence that a more dedicated equestrian theme would bring more excitement to our town. Further, just after we released the news of our equestrian theme, we were immediately contacted by Lisa Diersen of the EQUUS Film Festival in NYC, requesting to be included in our festival,” said Menetre, festival co-founder.
1-equus-film-festival-tyron-logoDiersen and business partner, Diana De Rosa, went to work populating the equestrian film category with their film picks, while informing each film’s director that their films had just been accepted into Tryon International Film Festival.
The EQUUS team’s take-charge attitude quickly assembled a handpicked collection of curated films chosen exclusively for TRYON 2017 with the Tryon Theatre being their dedicated venue.
With well-known actors like William Shatner, Linda Hamilton, Meg Foster and Mariette Hartley in play and appearing in other feature films, one film was picked as the most appropriate for the gala opener.
Into the spotlight“Into the Spotlight: The Journey of an Equine Theater Horse”, directed by Yvonne Barteau, made the cut with her film which epitomizes the true theme –“It’s all about the horse”.
During the days of the festival, the town and attendees can expect to see an influx of filmmakers from around the world, including the entire cast of “Into the Spotlight”, with six of their theatre horses in tow.
Christian and Kim OliverKim and Christian Oliver of Edge Brewing have stepped up to sponsor and coordinate the logistics of moving “Into the Spotlight” team of actors and horses from Chicago to Tryon. While here, Barteau and her team of trainers and dressage riders will be performing to an overflow crowd at the Tryon International Equestrian Center, during their Saturday Night Lights event.titos logo
The Tito’s Experience: Cocktail Party and Art Show will be another treat to electrify the downtown area, with world-class artists and photographers displaying their art at Carri Bass Studio on Saturday evening.
With approximately 60 films scheduled to run in five screening location over a two and a half day period, the 2017 Tryon International Film Festival is all but tacked up for a wild ride.
The 2017 Tryon International Film Festival begins on Friday, October 27 thru 29th. Tickets are available at the Tryon Fine Arts Center and online at

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