Sundance 2019

As I watch a video scroll across my feeds of a truck stuck in the snow getting towed off Main Street Park City while people ski past the camera, I rethink all of my packing. The first time I headed out to Sundance Film Festival was as a Producer (Welder, Animator, Tech, Preparator) on a New Frontiers project in 2012, an electronic sculpture that begged to be broken by users over-assuming the term interactive. Last year I returned as a representative of a film festival. This year, I’m repping more film fests, doing some blog posts (more on that soon!) and catching up with the coasts who migrate to the mountains for this fortifying, otherworldly experience.


A few years back, a (former) employer of my mine in the film festival industry said that I should be proud of my accomplishments even though I come from a different social class than most others in the field. This statement totally spiraled my self-perception. Meant as a compliment (!), I still began to question my professional choices-- if my contributions were good enough, if I belonged where I was. But recently I’ve realized that this attitude is the exact reason I choose to be in this industry: to support the creativity of people who have been excluded, othered, or made invisible by much of the industry. Sundance might be a lot about networking (and a little about hot tubs), but Sundance has also worked really hard to be at the forefront of new ideas and inclusivity-- formally, culturally and more. For me, the film industry isn’t about who is allowed to get into the party (though getting in can be nice, especially when there are good, free snacks), it has always been about something beyond these stifling, superficial boundaries. So, whether my ex-boss thinks I should be there or not: see you soon Park City!!!



Donna K. lives in the Midwest and on the internet. Mostly she writes about her interest in the offline world.