Livin’ Reel Project

NashFilm’s 2019 “Living Reel” Community Project

In 2004 the Nashville Film Festival began its at-risk youth program, the Living Reel Project, supported by Metro Arts, the Tennessee Arts Commission, and the Memorial Foundation. Each year, the festival partners with an organization whose efforts serve at-risk youth from diverse backgrounds. During the Living Reel program, NashFilm partners with filmmakers and musicians to help the teens learn to work together as a team, while expressing their thoughts and experiences through the art of music and film.

Now 16 years old, the Living Reel Program gives at-risk teens a hands-on experience in filmmaking and songwriting. With support from Moraine Music Group, Metro Arts, the Tennessee Arts Commission and the Memorial Foundation, the program has been able to operate since 2004. During the project, a group of teens dedicate after-school hours to write a song telling the story of their strength and the struggles they have overcome. With help from professional musicians and songwriters, they compose their song which they later record in a professional studio. By the end of their production week, they have a finished song and a short film documenting their entire process. This film is then taken on the road to the Nashville Film Festival and various TV/radio interviews where their work and proven strength within adversity is celebrated.

This year the Living Reel Program partnered with Youth Villages and met with a group of girls from one of their Tennessee homes. The aim of the program is to provide at-risk teens in the Nashville community with a healthy outlet to express themselves and further explore their strengths. The groups are specifically matched with leaders and mentors within the community that would most benefit the current group of teens. Led by Dianna Maher of Moraine Music Group and recorded at The Blue Room Recording Studios in Berry Hill, the 2019 Living Reel project highlights the original song “I Choose” featuring co-writers/artists and mentors Shannon LaBrie and Carly Moffa with producer Karen Kosowski and engineer Charles Yingling.