Inaugural music video festival aims to bring people together

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COLUMBIA - The inaugural "VidWest" music video festival is taking place on Friday and Saturday in Columbia.

The goal of the festival is to try and bridge the gap between local filmmakers and musicians.

"The idea was really obvious," festival founder Melissa Lewis said. "There's definitely a gap, and music videos are such an accessible form of filmmaking."

David Corica is a digital storytelling student at MU and looks at the festival as a learning experience.

"I'm really interested in the film of digital media," Corica said. "I want to get a sense of what it takes and what it looks like at a higher level."

The festival is not limited to local submissions. In fact, submissions from Israel and South Africa give it an international touch.

"We're about networking and bringing people together," Lewis said. "The idea of a visual album...it's getting a resurgence."

Lewis said that the intimacy of the event is an important element. Small venues are intentionally booked to try and make various events more welcoming.

"We wanted to start small and make it approachable," Lewis said. "Our venues are very non-traditional, and that's very intentional."

Over 10 venues in Columbia will play host to the main events on Saturday.

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