Andrew Garrison & TRASH DANCE

May 3, 2013 - 9:58 am

Andrew Garrison is an independent filmmaker based in Austin who works in both documentary and fiction. His past films include the documentary feature THIRD WARD TX (2007) and the narrative triptych THE WILGUS STORIES (2000), both of which premiered at SXSW and aired on PBS. Garrison's work has earned him Guggenheim, Rockefeller, NEA and AFI Fellowships, and his films have screened at film festivals around the world. He is also an Associate Professor of Film and Digital Media Production at The University of Texas at Austin.

Garrison's most recent film to garner acclaim is the documentary TRASH DANCE which chronicles the making of The Trash Project. Directed by choreographer Allison Orr with an original score by Graham Reynolds, The Trash Project was a unique partnership between an Austin arts organization and a City of Austin department, featuring 24 employees and 16 large sanitation vehicles from Austin Resource Recovery. The film premiered at the 2012 SXSW Film Festival, where it won the SXSW Special Jury Award. The film has since screened at the Full Frame festival in Durham, NC, winning the Audience Award; and Silverdocs international documentary film festival in Silver Springs, MD where it received the Silverdocs Audience Award. The film opens for a limited run at Austin's Violet Crown Cinema on May 3.

TRASH DANCE has also been selected for the American Film Showcase, a major touring film program bringing American documentaries, feature films, and animated shorts to audiences worldwide. The U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs launched the American Film Showcase in October 2011, with the goal of introducing people around the world to American culture and values through the global language of film. The American Film Showcase is a partnership between the Department of State and USC's School of Cinematic Arts. We all knew Austin's sanitation workers were stars, but now they're international cultural ambassadors, too! 

TRASH DANCE is one of 35 exceptional films chosen for the 2013 program, which includes critically-acclaimed feature films SUGAR and WIN WIN and the 2012 Academy Award winner for Best Short Documentary, INOCENTE. Teams made up of a feature filmmaker, film expert, and program staff member will travel to selected countries to screen films, as well as participate in a wide range of community and professional activities, including presenting workshops in all areas of production, writing, animation, and even distribution and independent financing.

Congratulations to Garrison, Orr, and the fabulous City workers who appear in the film!