~~~ Let’s Make a Splash! ~~~

The 2013 Moondance


is now open for submissions!

Get your entry in NOW for this great opportunity

to showcase your talents and for a good chance to

win the Moondance!

SUBMISSION CATEGORIES: Feature Films, Short Films, Documentary Films, Animation Films, Music Videos, Feature Screenplays, Short Screenplays, Original Music & Film Scores, Stageplays, TV Pilot Scripts, Filmed TV Pilots, TV Episodics, Short Stories, Libretti, Radio Plays, & More…




(save $5 on entry fee @ Acteva)


• FILMMAKERS: Moondance International Film Festival is now an IMDb Qualifying Festival, granting all eligible film submissions (via Withoutabox),  a fast-tracked title page on!

• WRITERS: Moondance requires hard-copies of screenplays, stageplays, TV pilots, short stories & radio scripts to be mailed to the competition for judging. Writers may request feedback & a professional critique on your work submitted to Moondance 2013,  for a nominal fee.

• COMPOSERS: Moondance requires CDs of film scores & original music to be mailed to the competition for judging.

SCROLL ON DOWN for more news, info, recommendations, insider tips on THE POWER OF MUSIC IN FILM, photos & thoughts for the day:

Are you undecided about which film festival competitions to enter this season?  You can’t go wrong by choosing Moondance first, because our finalists & winners, writers, composers and filmmakers, are very happy to discover that doors are finally opened to them, after being a part of the Moondance! Please check out our SUCCESSES page, to see what great new opportunities Moondancers can access.

• MOVIEBYTES.COM lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!


  • Every single submission received is quickly acknowledged by a personal email to the entrant.
  • As Moondance’s artistic director, I have had the rare pleasure of personally previewing and judging every single film, reading all screenplays and other written works, and listening to all music and film scores submitted to the annual competition.
  • I have selected all the films to be screened and all the winners in every category, and have done so, successfully, from the very first Moondance, in 2000, and continue to do so.
  • I do not travel to other film festivals looking for films to invite. In the rare event that a very special film is invited to be screened at Moondance, it is clearly labeled as “invited”, and it can have no chance of winning an award. Only submitted films have that opportunity.
  • All entrants to the annual competition are notified of the status of their submission, whether winner, finalist or semi-finalist, by the news blog and on the website. All selected filmmakers are notified in advance as to when and where their film will be screened.
  • When submitting your work to the Moondance annual competition, you can be 100% assured that it will be carefully previewed and judged fairly, and that you will be kept informed during the process.

~ Elizabeth English


Good news! The General Manager of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra  got to hear my music, and he loved it! He flew to Florida to play my music for the Pops music conductor there, and he wants to see if they will use it for the Pop Music series, next year. It’s not definite, yet, but they love my work!” ~ STEVE WILHELM, Moondance film score winner, for “I Fell in Love With You”, which was played at the official wedding reception for Kate Middleton & Prince William, at their request.


Help bring peace to families around the world with your Heifer gift.

HEIFER INTERNATIONAL’S mission is to work with communities to end hunger and poverty and care for the Earth. By giving families a hand-up, not just a handout, we empower them to turn hunger and poverty into hope and prosperity, but our approach is more than that. By bringing communities together and linking them with markets in their area, we help bring sustainable agriculture and commerce to areas with a long history of poverty.

Our animals don’t just provide project partners with a reliable source of food, but also a reliable source of income. Extra agricultural products, such as milk from cows or goats, honey from bees or eggs from chickens, can be both shared within the community and sold at market. This new income, coupled with the training in sustainable practices that our partners receive, allows partners to clothe their families, provide them with medical care and send their children to school.

And when not just one but many families gain this new sustainable produce and income, it brings new opportunities for building schools, creating agricultural co-ops, and forming community savings and loan groups to help fund entrepreneurial start-ups. Newly formed women’s groups help increase the communities’ full potential, as neighbors who may have never interacted now come together to help the community prosper.

It’s a lofty goal, but it’s happening! In communities around the world, our 12 Cornerstones model is helping people lift themselves from hunger and poverty.

Give a goat, a flock of geese, a hive of bees, seeds of corn, or even a buffalo, as holiday gifts to friends & family!


photo by Virginia Blaisdell

“SHE’S BEAUTIFUL WHEN SHE’S ANGRY” This feature documentary film, directed by Mary Dore & Nancy Kennedy, resurrects the buried history of the outrageous, often brilliant women who founded the modern women’s movement from 1966 to 1972. SHE’S BEAUTIFUL will take us from the founding of NOW, with ladies in hats and gloves, to the emergence of more radical factions of women’s liberation; from intellectuals like Kate Millett to the street theatrics of WITCH (“Women’s International Conspiracy from Hell!”). Artfully combining dramatizations, performance, and archival imagery, the film will recount the stories of women who fought for their own equality, and in the process created a world-wide revolution. Remarkably, there has never been a feature film on the early days of women’s liberation.

Please consider making an individual donation to the SHE’S BEAUTIFUL Film Project! All donations are fully tax-deductible, through our non-profit sponsor, City Lore, or through our Kickstarter site. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Slow Food stands at the crossroads of ecology and gastronomy, ethics and pleasure. It opposes the standardization of taste and culture, and the unrestrained power of the food industry multinationals and industrial agriculture.

Our Philosophy: We believe that everyone has a fundamental right to the pleasure of good food and consequently the responsibility to protect the heritage of food, tradition and culture that make this pleasure possible. Our association believes in the concept of neo-gastronomy – recognition of the strong connections between plate, planet, people and culture.

Our Vision: We envision a world in which all people can access and enjoy food that is good for them, good for those who grow it and good for the planet.

Our Mission: Slow Food is an international grassroots membership organization promoting good, clean and fair food for all.

Slow Food is working to help communities around the world to rebuild their local food systems in order to eat better, protect the environment and maintain cultural diversity. Together, we defend the right to access food that tastes good…
a fresh and flavorsome daily diet which is part of our local culture. is clean…
production methods than don’t harm the environment or human health. And fair…
accessible prices for consumers and fair compensation for producers.



The Power of Music in Film!

By Elizabeth English

A film’s production and post-production phases include: editing, sound, foley, dubbing, special effects, background ambience, music, lab work, color, title, trailers, director, assistant directors or ADs, cinematographer or DP, focus-pullers, gaffers, best boy, key grips, script supervisor, body doubles, sound and light, still photographer, videographer, production assistants or PAs, studio execs, wranglers, extras, location manager, foley, prop master, special effects, extras, stunt coordinator, tech advisors, book-keeper/accountant, fire marshall, production designer, art director, storyboard artists, line producer, editor…all those elements that make the world of the film believable to the audience: story, set design, lighting, sound, special FX, continuity, locations, props, extras, stunts, costumes, hair and makeup, musical score composer & arranger, music…

Music! Ah, yes. The power of music in film. A feature film needs 30 to 40 minutes of music, which is one of the most important elements in a film.

A film score can be artfully used:

  • to arouse
  • to manipulate
  • to frighten
  • to soothe & calm
  • to aid in transitions from scene to scene
  • to punctuate
  • to comment
  • to move the plot along
  • to focus attention
  • to add sense of continuity
  • to add information
  • to heighten tempo
  • to add dramatic tension
  • to change mood
  • to add character
  • to define
  • to add dimension
  • …and to give the film a new or different meaning

The major categories of a film score are:

THEME, such as the musical theme from the James Bond films.

SOURCE, as from a radio, TV, iPod, or a band shown on screen.

MOVIE SONG: like the music from “Titanic”

UNDERSCORING: such as soft, “seen but not heard” music.

DEVELOPMENTAL or NARRATIVE music. adds to the story as it unfolds, weaving in and out, through the entire film


OVERTURE: the central core. Sets mood, sets time, sets location.

LEITMOTIF: identifies the character or repeated action on screen., such as the famous tune from the film, “Jaws”.



Angelina & Alison

“What’s the best measurement for success? Happiness! How happy are you? Success and money can contribute to happiness, but happiness itself is another thing altogether. Words like ‘family’, ‘friends’, ‘love’ and ‘laughter’ have a lot more to do with happiness than words like ‘gross’, ‘capital’ and ‘revenue’.

Money is a by-product of bigger, more meaningful goals such as passion, fun and wisdom. As I’ve said before, have fun, do good, and the money will come.” ~SIR RICHARD BRANSON (excerpt from a LinkedIn text)


Guatemalan girl & tourist

“I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.” ~ MAYA ANGELOU


Fig Tree in Greece, photo by Chris Anastasiadis

“The key is to keep watering the tree, not just picking the fruit.” ~ CHINESE PROVERB


Rock Formations in the Sea, Thailand, photo by Alan James

“Never, ever give up! No matter what.” ~~EE’S PERSONAL MOTTO


“There is applause which is superior to that of the multitudes: one’s own.” ~ ELIZABETH ELTON SMITH


“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant.” ~ ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON


“Follow your inner moonlight, don’t hide the madness.” ~ ALAN GINSBERG


NOTE FROM THE DIRECTOR: Thanks for the many nice endorsements for my screenwriting, filmmaking, directing & etc., everybody! I’d also love to see some heartfelt endorsements for my 15 years of work as founder, executive director, artistic director, programmer, festival event director, & blogger at the Moondance International Film Festival, too! ~ Elizabeth English & Moondance Film Festival

~~ Thanks for reading the Moondance news blog!

~~ NOTE: Replying? Have a question? Change the email subject line! Please don’t just click on REPLY, if you want to comment or ask a question about this blog, because your email to me will stack up in Gmail, and I have to scroll through the entire blog to find your email, along with the many others who just click REPLY to the blog. Changing even a word, or adding a /, in the subject line of the email to me will make it arrive as an individual email. Thanks for the email courtesy!

~~ Please forward on this news blog to your friends and colleagues!

Winter view from the Moondance office, Boulder, Colorado


~ MOONDANCE 2013 ~ news & info
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