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International Emmy Winner Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On Plays Friday, February 16

Friday Harbor Film Festival’s FREE Best of the Fest series will show Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On, winner of the 2023 International Emmy Award in Arts Programming, at the San Juan Island Grange on Friday, February 16 at 7 pm. It will be followed by a pre-recorded interview about the film with Producer Kyle Irving. Details are available at This event is FREE and open to the public.  No tickets or reservations are needed.

Have you wished to submit your documentary to the Festival in October?  Submissions are now open for features, short films, and Young Filmmakers Showcase short films until August 1 at 

Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On

Experience the story of the Oscar-winning Indigenous artist from her rise to prominence in New York’s Greenwich Village folk music scene through her six-decade groundbreaking career as a singer-songwriter, social activist, educator, and artist.

Buffy Sainte-Marie Carry It On film poster

Over a career spanning six decades, Cree musician, artist, and activist Buffy Sainte-Marie has used her platform to campaign for Indigenous and women’s rights and has inspired multiple generations of musicians, artists, and activists.

The film features never-before-seen archival material, new performance footage, and interviews with Sainte-Marie, Joni Mitchell, Sonia Manzano, John Kay, Robbie Robertson, Jackson Browne, and others.

Sainte-Marie changed perceptions of Indigenous people in music, film, and television. When approached to play a lead role in a 1968 episode of The Virginian, she famously demanded that all Indigenous roles be played by Indigenous peoples. During her five years on Sesame Street, She helped create segments based on her experiences as an Indigenous woman in North America.

Kyle Irving, Producer

Co-owner and Executive Producer of one of Canada’s largest production companies, Indigenous-owned Eagle Vision, Kyle Irving O.M. has produced more than 300 hours of film and television content over the last 22 years. Having worked in the Indigenous community for more than 20 years, Irving has a strong focus on championing under-represented talent development and has mentored and supported numerous emerging writers, directors, producers, and crew.


Each month through September Best of the Fest will offer award-winning documentaries along with livestream Q&As.  Programs will begin at 7 pm.  Some are in collaboration with the San Juan Island Library; others are at the San Juan Island Grange.  Since they’re on Fridays, they are a great “date night” activity. 


Here’s the schedule:

The Last Act and She Marches in Chinatown – March 8 at the Library

PUPS, The Bench, Call of the Orcas, and Island Marble Butterfly Conservation – April 12 at the Grange

Elemental – May 10 at the Grange

Mama Bears – June 14 at the Library

Patrick and the Whale – July 12 at the Library

Covenant of the Salmon People and Our Sacred Obligation – August 9 at the Library

Common Ground – September 13 at the Grange


Details about the films in the series are available on the website. Mark your calendar and plan to view the exceptional Best of the Fest documentaries.


The 2024 Best of the Fest Series Presenting Sponsor: SaviBank; Media Sponsor: Cascade Public Media | KCTS9

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