The passing of AAFF founder George Manupelli in September 2014 inspired a truly special reunion at this year’s 53rd Festival. Many of George’s close collaborators, students and friends, some of whom had not been back to the Festival in over 40 years, participated in a Tribute to George, held in the main auditorium of the Michigan Theater on the Sunday afternoon of the Festival.
The event opened with remarks and a performance by renowned avant grade musician David Rosenboom, who is also the Dean of the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) School of Music. Rosenboom performed his original score to Manupelli’s Portraits, Self Portraits and Still Lives 1972-73 with Special Reference to the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy, or This is Not Aufwiedersehen This is Goodbye.
The print for the film was generously provided by John Caldwell, who also shared remarks at the Tribute. Caldwell had been a Festival Manager during the time that Manupelli directed the Festival from York University where he had taught after University of Michigan.
Other presenters included Harold Borkin, Joe Weher, Betty Johnson, Ingrid Manupelli, Allan Schreiber, Woody Sempliner, Bob LaZebnick, Chrisstina Hamilton and visual and performance artist Pat Oleszko.
A former Manupelli student, Pat often performed at the AAFF in its early days. Be sure to check out this video of Pat talking about George and the Festival. It includes shots of her Tribute performance from the 53rd AAFF.