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Amplifying Voices: A Celebration of Diversity in Film


Friday, February 3
Saturday, February 4
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Sponsored by

Sponsored by

Sponsored by


The Cabot
286 Cabot Street
Beverly, MA 01915 United States

$5 tickets available for students, seniors, and EBT Card to Culture cardholders.
*Please note: EBT tickets are only available at the box office. Learn more at thecabot.org/cardtoculture.

Amplifying Voices: A Celebration of Diversity in Film is the first of what will be an annual two-day film event in Beverly, MA celebrating and screening the perspectives and artwork of filmmakers of color. The event takes place February 3 – 4, 2023.

Our goal is to build an understanding for audiences on the North Shore of Boston (and beyond) through our theme of “lived experiences” as told by filmmakers of color. We hope this will spark new ways of thinking, prompt conversations, and create empathy and understanding as the audience undergoes, through cinematic storytelling, an experience outside of their own.

Over the last several years, we have seen the demographics on the North Shore change, resulting in a more diverse population of people and cultures. This celebration of filmmakers of color will be impactful for that changing demographic; providing examples for our youth and others who yearn for an opportunity to see and experience stories that may be like their own.

This is also an opportunity for residents of the North Shore to gather together through our common love of film and storytelling as we build a new tradition in the City of Beverly.

The two-day event will feature an opening reception, followed by a feature film screening and Q&A with actors, directors, and/or producers of the film. The second day will feature a themed program of short films, followed by a second feature film screening, with a Q&A and closing reception.

Films Curated By
The Roxbury International Film Festival and CineFest Latino Boston



Tickets for individual screenings can be found below.

Friday, February 3 at 7PM: Feature Film and Opening Reception

The Sit-In: Harry Belafonte Hosts The Tonight Show
Documentary, directed by Yoruba Richen, USA, 75 minutes

Q&A to follow with:
  • Professor Jamie Wilson of Salem State University
  • Associate Professor Elizabeth Matelski, Endicott College

Saturday, February 4 at 4PM: Shorts Series: A Slice of History

Q&A with Jenny Alexander to follow.

Strike For Freedom: Frederick Douglass in Scotland
Directed by Parisa Urquhart, Scotland, 15:41

When I Get Grown: Reflections of a Freedom Rider
Directed by Chris Preitauer, USA, 30:50

A Call to Action: the Freedom Budget of 1966
Directed by Jenny Alexander, USA, 7:30

The Significance of Sidney: A Black Film Mini Lecture
Directed by Mike Dennis, USA, 38:24 

Saturday, February 4 at 7PM: Feature Film and Closing Reception

Omar Sosa’s: 88 Well-Tuned Drums
Documentary, directed by Soren Sorenson, USA, 99:00

Q&A with Soren Sorenson to follow.


Lisa Simmons is the Director of the Roxbury International Film Festival (RoxFilm) and The Color of Film Collaborative (TOCF), whose mission is to screen films that celebrate people of color across the world and support filmmakers who are creating media aligned with the mission of TOCF and RoxFilm.  The Festival, now in its 25th year, has screened over 1300 films and produces two screening series Shared Stories with Cinefest Latino Boston and the Boston Asian American Film Festival as well as the Healing Arts Series, with the Wellness Collaborative, Inc., using film as a catalyst for conversation focused on Black and Brown physical and mental health.   Ms. Simmons has also produced theater and film in the Boston area and has published and presented about the WPA’s Negro Theater Project that existed between 1935-1939.  In addition, Ms. Simmons is the Program Manager for the Communities Initiative at the Mass Cultural Council overseeing the administration and grant funding for the Local Cultural Council Program, Cultural Districts and the Festivals Program. She is the recipient of several awards including: GK Top 100 Influential People of Color, Image Award from Women in Film New England, Diversity award from Our Place Theater Project, Leadership award from the Urban League Guild of Eastern Massachusetts, The President’s Award for Leadership from Dimock Community Health Center and the Community Award from Boston Arts Academy.  She on the Advisory Board of Company One Theater, an advisory member of The Deena Larson Exhibition presented at the ICA and a former board member of Mass Humanities.

Sabrina Avilés is an award-winning independent filmmaker, whose work has taken her throughout Latin America, Canada and Europe. During her 25+ year career, she has worked on many PBS programs, among them the six-hour Peabody award-winning series, Latino Americans. She recenty completed her first documentary short, Raising the Floor, which won Best Documentary Short at the 2022 GlobeDocs Film Festival. Currently, she is in production for her first feature-length documentary on the city of Chelsea, MA and its response to the pandemic. In addition to her film production career, in 2016, Sabrina became the Executive Director of the Boston Latino International Film Festival. During her tenure, the festival received a special commendation from the Boston Society of Film Critics, “for bringing to Boston audiences a varied, challenging line-up of local, national and international films by Latinx filmmakers, and for prioritizing outreach to community partners.” In 2022, Sabrina founded CineFest Latino Boston film festival. Born in Washington Heights, Sabrina’s family originates from Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. She earned a B.S. in Broadcasting/Film from Boston University and currently lives in Boston, MA.