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Saturday, 26th November, 2016

Steve Bastoni and Megan Pascoe, the organisers of a unique short film festival that will hit town in May, say Broken Hill is the perfect spot for the world-first event. PICTURE: Daniel Stringer Steve Bastoni and Megan Pascoe, the organisers of a unique short film festival that will hit town in May, say Broken Hill is the perfect spot for the world-first event. PICTURE: Daniel Stringer

By Daniel Stringer

Broken Hill is set to play host to a world first when it comes to the film industry, with a short film festival to put the city under the solar spotlight.

‘The Perfect Light, The Art of Innovation’ will hit Broken Hill in May and will be the world’s first solar-powered film festival. 

The organisers were in Broken Hill yesterday to meet with potential sponsors and scout out locations.

Steve Bastoni is an Australian actor known for his work in such shows as Neighbors and Police Rescue and he has teamed up with producer Megan Pascoe.

They have put together Victoria’s largest short film festival for the last six years and now turn their attention to a new project.

“I had the idea a few years ago to do a solar-powered film festival and to cultivate the energy from the solar panels to run the screen,” said Mr Bastoni.

“Then I started looking around and I realised that Broken Hill already had the second largest solar farm in Australia.

“That, mixed with the unique heritage of films such as Mad Max and Priscilla, and you have the perfect location for the project.

“Where better to hold the world’s first solar-powered film festival than in Australia’s first heritage-listed city?” 

The festival will run for three days, with a launch being held on the Friday night that will incorporate the essence of Broken Hill. 

“The launch will tap into the whole drag queen and Mardi Gras style, with people able to do their own floats and we hope to engage some of the local drag queens,” said co-organiser Megan Pascoe.

“There will also be a free short film festival featuring 18 films held in Sturt Park on the Saturday, with things wrapping up on the Sunday.”

As well as providing three days of entertainment, the festival will also bring a boost to the local economy and tourism. 

Mr Bastoni said he expected around 2000 people to come to Broken Hill over the event and was hoping to bring as much exposure to the city as possible.

“We are hoping the festival will draw attention to Broken Hill as a premiere filmmaking location and we are going to publicise it internationally through G’Day LA. 

“We look to promote the area as not only a film-making hub, but also as a leader in innovation and renewable energy.”

While in Broken Hill the pair met with local businesses, Aus Gold, the Musicians’ Club and Foundation Broken Hill were the first to come on board.  They have also had discussions with City Council who they hope will provide some financial support.

It isn’t every day an event like this lands on our doorstep and Mr Bastoni said if they get the support, they will keep on coming back for more. 

“We have the vision of making this an annual event and we will run it for the next 10 years, if you will have us.”

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