Hatch Festival about more than numbers, organizers say

Posted: Tuesday, October 4, 2011 12:15 am
RACHEL HERGETT, Chronicle Staff Writer

Organizers of Hatch Festival are often asked for metrics – exactly how many people are changed by the annual Bozeman meeting of creative minds and showcase of their endeavors.

The number isn’t the point, according to festival founder Yarrow Kraner.

“How many people are inspired by a song by John Lennon, a Spielberg film, a Frank Lloyd Wright building?” he asked referencing the three main aspects of the festival – music, film and architecture. “If we can inspire one (person) that’s going on to help change the world, the community can be proud.”

This year, Hatch has focused on that inspiration, a goal that starts with the content of the panels and films.

The documentary “More to Live For,” for example, tells the story of jazz saxophonist and 15-time Grammy winner Michael Brecker, Olympic hopeful Seun Adebiyi and entertainment insurance executive and co-founder of the Love Hope Strength Foundation James Chippendale. The three men are united by the common need for a bone marrow donor.

Screening attendees will be invited to join the international registry for donors. Testing is free and requires only a cheek swab.
In addition to inspiration, Hatch organizers have sought validity in terms of content, desiring to convey ideas “relevant to what’s happening to the world,” Kraner said.

Mentors include innovators such as John Leitner, founder of Insight Labs, NASA designer Evan Twyford and cinematographer David Klein, who has worked on “Zack and Miri Make a Porno,” “Clerks,” “Mallrats” and “True Blood.”

Though Hatch can provide access to ideas and creative works, it is up to the attendee to find something they’re passionate about, organizer John Montoya said.

“If you engage in it, you’re going to get out of it what you put into it,” he said.

Kraner suggests finding more personal connections with mentors. “Bring your work,” Kraner suggested. “Ask someone to lunch.”
Montoya and Kraner have careers and lives but volunteered their time and effort for the festival they believe in. “Our passion for Hatch is a reflection of our passion for the community,” Montoya said.

Starting Wednesday, Hatch mentors and other key players will sequester themselves at the Double T River Ranch in Clyde Park to design a vision for the future.

“We’re so dedicated to wanting this to work, we’re spending two days to evolve and make good on the concept,” he said.
Hatch officially begins today with a music industry roundtable at Montana State University, although most events are Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Events include workshops, panels, keynotes, concerts and films. For a complete schedule, pricing and more information on Hatch events, visit hatchexperience.com/bozeman-schedule/.