Asbury History

Founded in 1980, The Asbury Film Festival originally took place annually in a church basement, near Asbury Avenue in Westbury. Guest Hosts included local radio personalities such as Ray White, Joseph Lapiana and Ken Dashow. The programs combined metro area college films with a few indie shorts..coming in from out of town festivals.

In 1987 The Asbury “Festival” changed its title to: “The Asbury Shorts Show of New York” and moved to the spacious Haft Auditorium on the campus of F.I.T. in Manhattan. The format and entertainment focus changed drastically.
The staff began to pursue major international award winning independent films. Celebrity Guest Hosts included:
Peter Gallagher, Bob Balaban, Manfred Kirchheimer, John Avildsen, Harvey Keitel, Matthew Modine, Pia Lidstrom, Dylan McDermott, Joan Micklin Silver and Bobby Rivers. Over the early 1990′s live elements were added to the festivities including music performance, art & photography exhibits and unannounced comedy bits surprising the audience in between the films. In 1998 Asbury Shorts was presented overseas for the first time @ Royal Festival Hall in London and the touring years officially began.
Since 1999, The Asbury Shorts Show, now officially known as “The NY Short Film Concert”, has been presented at:
The Museum of Fine Arts Boston, The Lake Shore Theatre in Chicago, Visions Cinema in Washington, D.C., The Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park, NJ, Summer Stage in Central Park, The Director’s Guild Theater in Manhattan, The AERO Theatre in Santa Monica, CA, Cinema Arts Centre in Huntington, Long Island and the Leminske Theater in Berlin, Germany to name just a few. Guest Hosts such as Edie Falco, Adrian Grenier, Olympia Dukakis and Richard Belzer have graced the Asbury NY stages. Each year the tour stops grow larger and audiences have overwhelming enjoyed the amazing experience of seeing the world’s best short films on the big screen!

The Short Film Concert Audience

Audience size has increased every year of the show’s existence. Now over 5,000 people attend Asbury Shorts shows across the country each year. This includes the general public, professional filmmakers, industry celebs, TV commercial directors & producers, advertising agency executives, theatergoers, film distributors and folks looking to experience a unique, fast-paced evening out without awards, long speeches and
the dreaded “Q & A” !

The Films

As many as three hundred films/videos are submitted to the NY Short Film Concert for consideration each year. Approximately two dozen will ultimately be selected for the tour. New entries must be under 20 minutes in length to be eligible. The “Concert” is a fast-paced entertainment event mixing the absolute best in comedy, drama and outstanding animation. Story content is most important to the selection team for Asbury Shorts NY.
A typical Asbury Shorts presentation will feature award winning shorts from the past combined with new intl. festival honorees.