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[STARTFEST] is a nonprofit film festival helping educate, exhibit and recognize the achievements of aspiring Florida student filmmakers
[STARTFEST] is a nonprofit film festival helping educate, exhibit and recognize the achievements of aspiring Florida student filmmakers
31 backers pledged $2,510 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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What is [STARTFEST]?

Where can Florida high school and college students learn from a head camera operator for CSI, an MTV music video producer, or a director with CBS News? Student Art Festival [STARTFEST] bridges the gap between young, aspiring filmmakers, and leading industry professionals. 

“It’s the only film festival in Florida specifically designed for students,” says Kyle Snavely, President of [STARTFEST] and former video production teacher. “From my years teaching at both the high school and college level, I realized there needed to be a place where students can compete against their peers, AND receive valuable, constructive feedback from people who know what it takes to be successful in this industry.”

“It’s very encouraging to young filmmakers,” explains Amelia Langston, a Senior TV Production student at Oviedo High School. “Not only is it just for students, but we get the opportunity to have our films viewed by professionals. That’s unheard of in most film fests.”

Stats & Numbers from Last Season

  • Over 100 high school and college student films were entered in our inaugural film festival, [STARTFEST]'13!
  • College students from every major College and University in Florida participated!
  • High School students from 11 different counties across Florida participated! 
  • Last season's grand champion is currently airing nationwide!
  • Our High School class winner from last season is already enjoying a successful career in Hollywood!
  • Over 83% of student finalists attended our festival last season!
  • 100% of surveyed teachers and students enjoyed their experience and will be participating again this season!

Press from Last Season

The Future of [STARTFEST]  

[STARTFEST] needs your help to connect current industry professionals with aspiring student filmmakers. With your support, we can reach out to Florida high school and college students across the state!

With your support, we will be able to make [STARTFEST] '14 possible in 3 steps:

Step 1

Secure the Orlando Repertory Theatre for the festival itself.

The REP, as it is commonly known, is a professional theatre for young audiences that offers a mainstage season, classes, camps, outreach and performance opportunities for young artists.

In order to host the festival at the Rep, Student Art Festival must rent the theater itself plus pay for a projectionist and audio engineer on the day of the event. This will cost Student Art Festival roughly $1500.

Step 2 

Produce and distribute marketing material for students, teachers and film enthusiasts.

Outreach is critical to the success of Student Art Festival. We need to spread the word both for student participation as well as festival attendance. To do this we must produce posters, flyers and postcards to be distributed across Florida. We have budgeted $3000 to make this possible.

Step 3

Facilitate a networking dinner for [STARTFEST] finalists, teachers and judges

This is an invaluable chance for our young filmmakers to connect directly with people in the industry and jumpstart their career! Dinner will be provided to roughly 30 students, teachers and judges at a cost of $10 per person. 

We need your support!

As you can see, this kickstarter campaign is one part of an essential fundraising campaign in order to see Student Art Festival succeed. We are also reaching out to corporate sponsors and applying to grant programs. With your support of this kickstarter campaign, you will help aspiring student filmmakers to reach their goals and see their films on the big screen! 

Plus you get to see a full day of great short films which is pretty cool too!

Who We Are

Kyle Snavely - Founder/President

Working in the industry since 2003, Kyle has produced over 200 films and has been recognized for his work in all areas of video production, including major motion pictures, national television, professional sporting events, local television, live event coverage and web content. Kyle also has been a video production educator for over 7 years, instructing students both at the high school and college level. Under his guidance, students have been recognized at the local, state, national and international level. 

Kat Quast - Vice-President

Kat has been Executive Director of Audubon Park Garden District for the last four years. During that time, Kat has helped shape the district into the most thriving and interesting of all the seven Main Street Districts in Orlando. Kat was Operations Manger of The Florida Film Festival for over eight years. She hired, trained and oversaw the entire regular season as well as festival staff. She has worked in and managed non-profit organizations for over 15 years and knows film festivals inside and out. 

Sharon Gustafson - Event Coordinator 

Sharon is no stranger to working with today’s youth. Sharon is a graduate from the University of Central Florida with a bachelor’s degree in Exceptional Student Education. She has been working with students of all ages since 2003. She is currently an exceptional education teacher at Millennium Middle School.

Jean "Momma" Snavely, PHD - Treasurer

Jean is Executive-in-Residence in finance at Western Kentucky University where she teaches a variety of finance and accounting classes in the Gordon Ford College of Business. Dr. Snavely has received the Gordon and Glenda Ford Award for Faculty Excellence, the Student Advisement Award, and the Vitale Award for Initiative, Innovation & Leadership while at WKU. She currently serves on the Honors and Assessment of Learning Committees in the College of Business. Prior to joining the faculty at WKU, Dr. Snavely taught at the University of Cincinnati, the University of Dayton, Wright State University and the University of Texas at Arlington. She has been associated with the Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps where she served as president and member of the board for 3 years. Jean has served on the boards of the Miami Valley School in Dayton, Ohio, the Junior League of Dayton, and the Junior League of Arlington, Texas. 

Allison Tate-Cortese - Youth Programs Coordinator

Allison Tate-Cortese is currently studying Film & Television Production at the prestigious University of Southern California in the heart of Los Angeles. She began her media career under the incredible mentorship of Kyle Snavely at Oviedo High School and so far in her young media career, she has won over $15,000 in awards, had her work screened on television and festivals across the country and she has been recognized and honored for her internationally. While directing is her passion, she is currently exploring immersive transmedia storytelling to continue to push the boundaries of multimedia experiences. 

Jessica Gross - Secretary

Jessica is currently studying Festival and Concert Management at the University of Central Florida’s Rosen College. Jessica has worked on and been a participant in numerous concerts and film festivals including the National Film Festival for Talented Youth, as well as event volunteer for the Clothing Warehouse Classic Vintage, NY. She is passionate about youth arts education and helping the talented students in the community. 

Jason Lietz - Sponsorship/Grant Coordinator

Jason Lietz has been with Workforce Central Florida for a decade and currently serves as the organization’s Community Outreach Manager. In this role, he works with community partners to have WCF represented throughout all of Central Florida at community events. Additionally, he is the organization creative director and oversees branding; internal and external signage; and all internal graphic design and communication efforts for both job seekers and employers.

Connect With Us

Additional Information

Student Art Festival Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, was founded in January, 2012 to provide high school and college students with education, exhibition and recognition in the arts.

Risks and challenges

There are plenty of challenges and hurdles in hosting a film festival. Many of these we experienced first hand last year setting up and running our inaugural event. Our solution? Backup plans, backup plans for the backup plans, and backup plans for the backup plans for the backup plans.

During our monthly board meetings, the board members approach our objectives from as many angles as we can imagine. This way we can one, come up with the best course of action, and two, begin to troubleshoot possible scenario's before they happen.

A quote the President of [STARTFEST] likes to say is, "The only mistake we can make is the one we don't learn from." We take this approach moving forward knowing that when mistakes happen we learn and move on!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Come see the show! Back our festival at the $10 level and receive one general admission ticket (a $20 value) to the full day 2014 Student Art Festival!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    The $10 OuttaTowner! Can't make the festival? We'll send it to you! Receive the [STARTFEST]'14 finalist videos as a digital compilation to enjoy whenever you want/wherever you are!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Cool poster bro! Support student filmmakers at the $25 level and you will receive a [STARTFEST] '14 poster PLUS two general admission tickets (a $40 value)!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Tickets and Posters and DVD's, OH MY! Make a $50 commitment and receive four general admission tickets (an $80 value), a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Hey that's me! Earn some street cred at $75 and see your name in our festival guide as a "Festival Supporter"! You will also receive four general admission tickets, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!


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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    On the silver screen! A $100 pledge will see your name listed in our festival guide as a member of the "Silver Screen" donor level, plus you will receive four VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!


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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    And the Oscar goes to... Show you care, you REALLY REALLY care about student filmmaking and have your name listed in our festival guide as a member of the "Oscar Gold" donor level. Plus receive four VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Q&A you say! Sponsor the Q&A portion of our festival. You (or a company representative) will be given the opportunity to address the audience prior to the Q&A. Your name (or brand) will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide under the title "Question & Answer Session hosted by (your name/brand)." You will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a board member. AND you will receive four VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    Dinner's on me! Come host our Student/Judge Networking Dinner! You (or a company representative) will be given the opportunity to address the students and judges prior to the dinner. Your name (or brand) will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide under the title "Student/Judge Networking Dinner hosted by (your name/brand)." You will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a board member. Plus you will receive four VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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    Pledge $1,250 or more About $1,250

    Leave a lasting impression! Be the host of our awards ceremony at the end of the night. You (or a company representative) will be given the opportunity to address the audience at the beginning of the awards ceremony. Your name (or brand) will be on all of the awarded trophies. Your name (or brand) will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide under the title "Awarding Sponsor." You will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a board member. Plus you will receive six VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    It's your show! Host the entire festival and you will receive naming rights, "STARTFEST '14 presented by (your name/brand)." Your name (or brand) will be on all marketing material. You (or a company representative) will be given the opportunity to address the audience at the beginning of the festival. Your name (or brand) will be listed on screen at the festival and in our festival guide under the title "Festival Sponsor." You will be personally thanked on stage at the festival by a board member. Plus you will receive eight VIP tickets with reserved seating, a [STARTFEST] '14 poster and a Championship DVD!

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Funding period

- (30 days)