Apricot Tree International Ethno Film Festival (ATIEFF)…

…is held annually during the first days of October. The festival takes place in various cities and villages of Armenia (this year – Yerevan (capital), Gyumri and Udjan).
The goal of the festival is to acquaint audiences with the customs and traditions, arts and craft of big and small nations and to interest young filmmakers in the ethnographic and anthropologic material, stimulating their creative search in that direction. The festival is as much a celebration of documentary films that depict the heartbeats of diverse ethnic groups, communities or groups of people, as it is a platform where filmmakers from around the world can meet, share and discuss ideas in a clear atmosphere and possibly make plans for future collaborations. To this end, Apricot Tree is devoid of red carpets and grandiose ceremonies. Instead the festival aims at creating a cozy friendly environment where participants can bond with one another and the audience, watch films and gain new information about the world and not least of all – have fun. Festival events are held in close proximity of one another and are mostly concentrated in a single cinema and hotel. Through various excursions to museums and landmarks the guests of the festival are given the opportunity to get acquainted with Armenian culture and history. The participants are also invited to an “ethnographic visit” to Armenian villages (this year – Udjan), where their films are screened and where they can hike and explore and share bread with the hospitable people of the village.
A conference/seminar is organized within the frames of the festival, where various issues of contemporary cinema are being discussed. Each year’s conference has its own headline.
So that wider audiences are also part of Apricot Tree, during the festival all films are shown on Armenian television.

Apricot Tree has two competition programs – 30 Minutes or More (for feature-length films) and 30 Minutes or Less (for short-length films).
The festival also has a Non-competition program that includes retrospectives and screenings of notable films that are relevant to the festival’s theme.

The jury, working on a democratic basis with equal votes for everyone, hands out awards in the following categories:
– Grand Prix – 30 Minutes or More
– Special Jury Prize – 30 Minutes or More
– Grand Prix – 30 Minutes or Less
– Special Jury Prize – 30 Minutes or Less
Also, a special prize is given by the Armenian Union of Filmmakers.