UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — When she first stepped foot into the historic Rowland Theatre in Philipsburg, Pearl Gluck knew she was looking at something special.
The Rowland Theatre is, in many ways, a monument to an earlier era of film history: a single-screen theater constructed in 1917, its interior lavishly decorated with sculptures of cherubs, rich crimson carpeting and Tuscan-style pillars. But Gluck, an assistant professor of film-video at Penn State, didn’t see just see the theater’s connection to the past — she had a vision for how it could shape the future and help empower the next generation of filmmakers.
“I instantly got drawn in, and I was thinking about ways in which we can engage the youth who are here in Philipsburg and this region with what already exists here,” Gluck said. “I knew there was something here that was brewing.”
That vision has blossomed into the inaugural Centre Film Festival on Nov. 8-10, which is bringing together community leaders and Penn State expertise while connecting young filmmakers with the mentorship they need to help them to tell their own stories.