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And the Winners of the 2019 NewFest LGBTQ Film Festival Are...

A Night at the Switch 'N Play
A Night at the Switch 'N Play

New York's LGBTQ film festival announced its jury and audience awards.


The winners of this year's jury and audience awards of NewFest, New York's LGBTQ Film Festival, have been unveiled.

The festival, which concludes tonight with a closing party and a screening of the award-winning Tu Me Manques, screened over 160 films in the past week.

The big winners from this diverse and international lineup of LGBTQ stories include Temblores (Grand Jury Prize for Narrative Feature), Queen of Lapa (Grand Jury Prize, Documentary Feature), And Then We Danced (Audience Award, Narrative Feature), and A Night at Switch 'N Play (Audience Award, Documentary Feature).

See the full list of winners as well as the commentary from the jurors below.

Audience Awards

LadylikePictured: Ladylike

Audience Award, Narrative Feature:And Then We Danced (Director Levan Akin)

Audience Award, Documentary Feature:A Night at Switch 'N Play (Director Cody Stickels)

Audience Award, Narrative Short:Wonder (Director Javier Molina)

Audience Award, Documentary Short:Ladylike (Directors Rachel Bickert, Emily Tapanes, Emma Wang, and Lidieth Arevalo)

Narrative Juried Awards

TembloresPictured: Temblores

Jurors were Murtada Elfadl, a film critic at The Film Experience; Lauren Wolkstein, filmmaker of The Strange Ones; and Elise McCave, director of Narrative Film at Kickstarter.

Grand Jury Prize, Narrative Feature:Temblores (Director Jayro Bustamante)

"The Narrative Features Jury awards Temblores the grand prize for its authentic and realistic depiction of a contemporary conservative society. Temblores is an anthropological yet personal story brimming with specificity in its depiction of the central loving relationship while encompassing other viewpoints. Its gothic austere filmmaking is contrasted with a warm and liberated characterization of the queer community."

Special Mention, Narrative Feature:Nevrland (Director Gregor Schmidinger)

Documentary Juried Awards

Queen of LapaPictured: Queen of Lapa

Jurors were Rodrigo Brandao, director of communications for The Intercept; Valerie Complex, freelance journalist; and Curtis Wong, reporter at HuffPost.

Grand Jury Prize, Documentary Feature:Queen of Lapa (Directors Theodore Collatos and Carolina Monnerat)

"In surveying this year's documentary lineup, one film stuck out to us for both its visual and narrative merits. We're proud to present the 2019 Grand Jury Prize for documentary features to Queen of Lapa, an immersive portrait of the great (and late) Luana Muniz, a transgender cabaret performer and sex worker in Lapa, a neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The film's sensitive take on a tightly knit group of trans women speaks volumes about the power of community, solidarity and personal resilience."

Special Mention, Documentary Feature:Our Dance of Revolution (Director Phillip Pike)

"A poignant and deeply researched documentary about reclaiming power in Toronto's LGBTQ community. By focusing on the work of Black queer activists towards equality, the film tells a critical story of the ongoing battle for racial justice within the LGBTQ movement -- and Canada at large."

Short Film Juried Awards

PonyboiPictured: Ponyboi

Jurors were Giselle Ariel Bluez, filmmaker and mentor at Global Action Project; Katja Blichfeld, co-creator and showrunner of High Maintenance; and Matthew Puccini, director of Lavender.

Grand Jury Prize, Short:Ponyboi (Directors River Gallo and Sade Clacken Joseph)

"Ponyboi wins for its distinctive vision and mastery of world-building; for its compelling, nuanced performance from its lead performer (River Gallo, who also co-directs) and for its sumptuous and striking cinematography and dreamy art direction. This film left the jury feeling excited by its filmmakers, River Gallo and Sade Clacken Joseph and what lies ahead for them both."

Special Mention, Short: Wonder (Director Javier Molina)

"An intimate, emotionally powerful film that portrays an authentic slice of New York life and resonated with us all long after watching. A lovingly and beautifully crafted film with great performances from its two lead performers Benji Siegel and Gabriel Furman (who also wrote the film)."

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Daniel Reynolds

Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.
Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.