Lights, Camera, Action: ArtsQuest to host The Greater Lehigh Valley Filmmaker Festival and a Weekend of Film-Related Events

Bethlehem, Lehigh Valley, PA – March 26, 2024 – ArtsQuest is excited to host The Greater Lehigh Valley Filmmaker Festival taking place from Friday, April 26 to Sunday, April 28, at the Frank Banko Alehouse Cinemas at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks.

On Friday, April 26, Lehigh Valley native Stephanie Gardner will unveil two episodes from her upcoming projector “33 and Me,” an international travel documentary television series, which follows American film director Gardner who upon turning 33, travels to over 33 countries around the world to meet and engage with other film directors in their thirties, to explore their lives, careers and cultures.

Each episode of “33 and Me” features a specific country and introduces audiences to the current generation of cinematic storytellers who are dynamically challenging the status quo of the world today. “33 and Me” explores the past, present and future of cinema in each of the 33 featured countries Stephanie visits. This screening will offer two episodes of the upcoming series and will be followed by a live in-person Q&A/talkback with Gardner.

“33 and Me” will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the public are $11, ages 25 and under as well as seniors are $8.50 and ArtsQuest Members are $7.50.

On Saturday, April 27 there will be a Student Showcase at 11 a.m., featuring various film projects from The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts, as part of their Literary Arts curriculum. These films were shot using only smartphones with no budget/high concept. The price is free to view the showcase.

Then, join us at 4 p.m. for the Free Curated Film Series: Selected Shorts Block. Four short films will be featured that were selected by the curators of ArtsQuest’s four-year round free film series, “Black Film: Then & Now,” “Cinema Significa,” “Fem in Film” and “LV LGBTQ+ Film Series”. Each of these films displays the uniqueness of its series. Afterward, there will be a Q&A and talkback session with the curators who will provide insight into their motivations behind their selections and why these films hold significance for them.

Throughout the weekend there will be multiple adjudicated blocks highlighting a variety of work from filmmakers throughout the Lehigh Valley. Each block is $10 and there are four blocks available, two on Saturday and two on Sunday. Blocks 1 and 2 will take place on Saturday, April 27 at 1:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. and Blocks 3 and 4 will take place on Sunday, April 28 at 2 p.m. and 4:15 p.m. All blocks contain mature themes not suitable for children, including language, violence and other adult content. Viewer discretion is advised.

The Unknown Planet Mystery Screening will be shown on Saturday, April 27 at 8 p.m. in the Frank Banko Alehouse Cinemas. The Unknown Planet series is a subscription-based film series to twelve different films throughout the year where the audience does not know the film title until the movie is playing. April’s screening is also open to the public and the film will be selected by guest curator Jesse Pires, Director & Curator of Lightbox Film Center at University of the Arts in Philadelphia. For more information and to sign up go to

The Greater Lehigh Valley Filmmaker Festival will also host its first 48-Hour Film Challenge where filmmakers are challenged to create a short, yet captivating 3–5-minute film in just 48 hours while being given specific stipulations that must be included in their film such as a specific character name, prop and line of dialogue. The Challenge itself will take place from April 19 at 8 p.m. through April 21 at 8 p.m. The finished films will then be screened at 2:15 p.m. on Sunday, April 28 at the festival.

The awards ceremony will take place at 6:30 p.m. There is no charge to attend the ceremony. A festival pass offering access to all events listed above is also available at $25. For more information on this film-filled weekend, visit

About ArtsQuest  

ArtsQuest’s mission is to provide access to exceptional artistic, cultural and educational experiences using arts and culture as key elements of economic development for our urban communities. ArtsQuest™ supports this mission via the presentation of performing and visual arts, film, arts education classes and outreach, youth programming and cultural events. Through festivals such as its flagship event, Musikfest; the Banana Factory Arts Center; and the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks arts and cultural campus, ArtsQuest’s programming reaches more than 1.9 million people annually. The organization’s programs and events, over 50% of which are free to attend, have a combined economic impact of more than $136 million annually in the region.


Information provided to TVL by:

Amber Kalnas