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Saving Hope

'Saving Hope's' Michelle Nolden: From repairing cardiac walls to curating film festivals

From repairing cardiac walls to curating film festivals – it’s all in a day’s work for actress Michelle Nolden, who plays Charlie’s caustic cardiac surgeon ex-wife on “Saving Hope” and is also the artistic director for Lakeshorts International Short Film Festival.

“My husband and I started the festival three years ago,” Nolden says about film and television producer, Chris Szarka. “I was sitting on a programming committee for Lakeshore Arts and we had a night called, ‘My Neighbour is an Artist.’ We got a few local film makers and showed some short films. It was a huge success so we decided to take it to the next level and here it is!”

The project has quickly expanded from a homegrown event to an international short film festival with 170 international submissions this year.

“Not everything knows about short (films) and how great they can be,” Nolden says.

On Friday, May 3, Lakeshorts will premiere the Loved and Local screening, featuring emerging and local filmmakers as well as selected award winners from the Gala held the following evening. Loved and Local is hosted by acting celebrity duo Gabe Hogan and Inga Cadranel.

Hosted by renowned film critic Richard Crouse, the Gala Performance on Saturday, May 4 will feature a dynamic program of films by filmmakers from Canada and around the world, including the festival award winners.

“Flashpoint” fans will be thrilled to learn that Enrico Colantoni’s film “Issues” will have two screenings, and will be awarded the Steam Whistle Brewery Home Grown Award.

“I’m always the most excited to see people’s reactions to the films,” Nolden says. “We always try to throw a few controversial ones in there, real discussion provokers.

“I’ve been trying my hand and directing and writing and realizing all the other aspects (of the craft) have made me really appreciate just what it takes to make a film or television show,” Nolden reflects.

“I find the shorts really inspiring. There are some really amazing ones. I think it just rounds out my acting world.”

For more about the festival visit LakeShorts.ca