For some of our special awards, pre-juries nominate films from the competitions with a special thematic focus. These nominated films are then presented in special screenings during the festival and the respective jury determines the winning film. This applies to the three film awards Golden Horseman Film Sound, LUCA Film Award for Gender Diversity and "fully political" - Short Film Award for Democratic Culture.



Sound is capable of triggering mental processes that, in combination with images, can transport us to other worlds. Cinema is a universe, and sound is like a magnetic force in every camera shot.


is German-Swedish and a student producer whose last film MODDERGAT won the 2023 Audience Award at FILMFEST DRESDEN. Prior to this she completed her MA Philosophy on the subject of truth strategies in documentary film in the image, sound and narration areas. Whether Foleys, AI music or wild tracks: She intends to enjoy especially hearing with which acoustic innovations this year’s competition films bring their perspectives on the world into the cinemas.


is studying media and design at Bauhaus University in Weimar. What is this? Ha, good question. It’s something he does not know himself exactly. But what he does know is that this study course has catapulted him into film scores. He has always been highly interested in sound and acoustics, playing music and been enthusiastic about exciting soundscapes. He had not had much to do with film so far, until Weimar. He gained his first opportunity here to co-edit the sound on set, as well as his first opportunity to accord films their own unique soundscape during postproduction. Because ultimately it is the sound that first brings the true magic in a film to life.


is a Georgian film researcher and PhD student taking cultural studies at Ilia State University. She is a member of FIPRESCI; co-founder, and Vice-President of the Georgian Film Critics and Scholars Association; co-editor and author at; film programmer at the Kutaisi International Short Film Festival; co-organiser of film screenings at the Georgian Film House; co-curator of the “Jonas Mekas 100 in Georgia” project. She has also participated in the FIPRESCI Warsaw Critics Project 2022; was a young FIPRESCI jury member at the Warsaw Film Festival; attended the European Workshop For Film Criticism – The End, held at Lago Film Fest and Ljubljana Short Film Festival in 2023.


makes experimental short films that have also been screened at FILMFEST DRESDEN. In this regard, the sound level has always played a unique role, and he frequently develops it himself – sometimes in a conventional style and more experimental at other times. He is studying computer science with minors in art and media – focusing on film and photography.

What interests him especially about the film score is its emotional, mental impact on the audience, also as a subversive and subconscious one. What he really likes is when the sound can be sensed so intensively that is grabs our whole bodies, with the audience literally being swept away. Yet for that, he can also be convinced by a more subtle sound score, however it must of course match the concept, story, style and visuals.


is a New Jersey-born, London-based sound designer and filmmaker. She studied at Barnard College in New York before receiving her MA from the London Film School in 2023. Her own films have played at British Shorts Berlin, Kyiv International Short Film Festival and Final Girls Film Festival, among others. Mastrodimos is most excited by the way film sound informs – and misinforms – our perception of the world around us.



took cultural studies and ethnography at Bremen University. During her studies, she became involved in film analysis and also co-staged theatre plays. Since 2022 she has worked as an educational advisor with the Gender Competence Centre Saxony, focusing on gender and migration. The discourses and values conveyed in film are highly important to her work. The Gender Competence Centre Saxony provides a network for and supports people involved in gender equality work in urban centres and rural areas. It works with regional cooperative partners in projects so as to introduce gender equality policy perspectives within the most diverse areas of activity in society. The events and projects are intended to motivate actively advocating against discrimination on the basis of gender, as well as to raise awareness for this.


lives and works in Dresden. The political scientist is employed as an education specialist with the Queeres Netzwerk Sachsen queer network Saxony federal working group in the press and PR area, as well as representing their interests. She knows from her own experience how important media representation is for the queer community. At the same time, she is committed to ensuring that there are sufficient queer structures throughout Saxony.


born 1967, is the press and public relations specialist for the Landesfachstelle Männerarbeit des LAG Jungen- und Männerarbeit Sachsen e. V., boys and men’s advocacy association in Saxony, as well as a systemic men’s counsellor and spiritual mentor from Dresden. He learned the trade of sign and graphic painting, was involved in the GDR civil and human rights movements, was a mail-art artist and a co-editor of Samisdat. He was a squatter and founded sociocultural projects and associations. In 1997 he established a corporate design agency. He is a calligrapher and visualiser. He is committed to progressive masculinity and gender-reflected men’s work. He applies a constructive-critical focus to analysing the images of men and represents these positions in campaigns and workshops.



works at the Montagscafé venue in the Staatsschauspiel Dresden theatre – an open space with a changing cultural programme for Dresden residents with and without a migration background. She is also part of the FLINTA* tech collective Kabelbrand, which supports political rallies, demonstrations and events.


I work in various fields, but my heart definitely lies in the political education work that I am permitted to undertake. My subjects include criticism of racism and empowerment. I am a Black, queer mother from Dresden. Yet despite the many privileges I can call my own, I have known from the very beginning what it can mean not to belong, to be “too much” or not enough. And in this regard, I am well aware that just being can be very political. Everything we do and who we are plays a role within the political system, because for me basically this constitutes one of the many perspectives on our social interdependencies and the resulting hierarchies.


born in Maputo, Mozambique, he came to the GDR as a contract worker in 1980. After successfully completing apprenticeships as a brewer, master brewer and food engineer, he now works at the Feldschlößchen Dresden brewery. Parallel to this, he is a board member of the AFROPA e. V. Dresden association, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. AFROPA e. V. is a non-profit organisation that cares for and supports migrants and refugees in cultural, sporting and political matters. He is a member of the German federal network Migrant*innenorganisationen (NeMO). Here, Luis Mazuze takes care of vulnerable fellow human beings, as well as being involved in international projects.


Born 1972 in Halle. She grew up in the East and became politically socialised during the German reunification period. She took communications, media and theatre studies in Leipzig, followed by 16 years in Dresden working in cultural PR and as a freelance copyeditor, as well as attending Filmfest Dresden many times. In 2016 she renegaded and moved away to Upper Lusatia, joining the teams of the Neisse Film Festival and the Kulturfabrik Meda/Mittelherwigsdorf venue, which also runs a small cinema. Since 2022 Kulturfabrik Meda has been one of 13 “Places of Democracy in Saxony” invited to name members to the pre-jury for the “fully political” Award.


I began working at the film festival this year, where I am in charge of the film coordination, as well as cooperations. Having completed art studies, I pay particular attention to the artistic qualities of films. Viewing the theme of migration within a wider context is very important for me also because I myself come from another country.

I am delighted that the festival is also screening politically committed films. This recurring aspect is accorded a prominent position in art and should not be forgotten, especially in today’s politically turbulent times.