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Red curtains rise again for Maxim Mazumdar

A street scene on Main Street, Stephenville from “The Impossible Dream” with Santiago Guzmán portraying Maxim Mazumdar, founder of The Stephenville Theatre Festival and Sarah Connors, right, portraying Cheryl Stagg, founding manager. - Submitted
A street scene on Main Street, Stephenville from “The Impossible Dream” with Santiago Guzmán portraying Maxim Mazumdar, founder of The Stephenville Theatre Festival and Sarah Connors, right, portraying Cheryl Stagg, founding manager. - Submitted - FILE

College of the North Atlantic’s Digital Filmmaking program is about to make the impossible possible.

A prepared release from the college said on June 22 at 8 p.m. the premiere of the program’s seventh annual intercession film entitled “The Impossible Dream” will take place at the Stephenville Arts and Culture Centre.

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The film was made to honour the 40th anniversary of the Stephenville Theatre Festival and its founder, Maxim Mazumdar.

The Impossible Dream is written and directed by John McKinnon and produced by first and second-year Digital Filmmaking students.

Set in the mid-1980s, the story follows Mazumdar (portrayed by Santiago Guzmán) and well-known local businesswoman Cheryl Stagg (played by Sarah Connors) on their journey to produce a “very ambitious season at their humble little theatre festival.”

In the production, the two are faced with many obstacles but like true visionaries; never lose sight of their goals.

“We’ve been wanting to produce a film about Maxim for years and with this year being the festival’s 40th anniversary, we thought it would be a nice tribute to the festival and all its accomplishments,” Peter Buckle, the film’s producer and Digital Filmmaking instructor at Bay St. George campus in Stephenville, said.

He said in his opinion, art in any community is important, it’s what makes a community worth living in, and he believes this film celebrates not only the theatre festival, but all artists.

Brenda Tobin, College of the North Atlantic’s Dean of Academics, Applied Arts and Tourism, said this project is yet another example of the quality of work the students are doing in order to prepare themselves for careers in the industry.

“We have a strong relationship with the ever-growing film industry in this province,” she said. “We are pleased our program, through these high-quality projects, ensures that students gain the real-life work experiences by working side by side with professionals in the industry.

In addition to the short narrative film, the evening at the Arts and Culture Centre will also feature the screening of a documentary about the Stephenville Theatre Festival, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of The Impossible Dream and, live performances celebrating the longest running professional theatre festival in the province.

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