Syracuse: International Film City USA!

Downtown Committee's annual meeting concentrated on the union of arts and economics with four dynamic participants and three words.

Three words: More -- Creative -- Partnerships.

This year's Downtown Committee meeting's theme was Downtown: Arts Color Economic Growth.

A need to focus on the arts has been bantered about in Syracuse for years. After all this churning it seems to have finally risen to the top of the agenda. As the arts are definitely the fuel of choice for the Downtown Committee of Syracuse's (DCS) economic thrust. Jim Breur the Chairman of the DCS said the revitalization of downtown has been closely related to the expansion of arts and education and cultural attractions.

Playing this hand the DCS brought in Will Maitland Weiss, the Executive Director of the Arts and Business Council of New York (ABC) as its keynote speaker. Weiss confirmed that this is a winning strategy employed successfully in many cities. The ABC's mission is to cultivate and stimulate alliances between the arts and business. The crop is green, as in dollars also known as economic growth. This was John D. Rockefeller III's vision when he started the ABC.

Weiss said you can do this here is Syracuse, "Three words: More -- Creative -- Partnerships."

Films a feature

Interspersed throughout the DCS program were trailers from films that have recently been made in Syracuse. Some quite chilling, one decidedly sexy.

Oddly enough Syracuse already has a great reputation on the International circuit of independent filmmakers. Which with American's hyper-focus on Hollywood, tends to get overlooked. But the non-Hollywood filmmakers of the world have a large economy that Syracuse has been aligning itself to access.

Maybe you have heard of the Syracuse Film Office? This is a partnership between the city of Syracuse, Onondaga County and the MDA driven by SYRAFest, Syracuse's Film Festival.

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