Local Artist Launches ‘Torchlight,’ a Community-Based Multimedia Arts & Production Studio in Belfast

  • January 17, 2024

Local Artist Launches ‘Torchlight,’ a Community-Based Multimedia Arts and Production Studio in Belfast 

The pilot project will partner with Belfast Area High School’s Extended Learning Opportunity program to provide audiovisual and media production mentorship.

Belfast, January 8, 2024—

Artist and Belfast resident Chris Battaglia—who brought the Village Canoe to Belfast in 2019, and outdoor community performance and film screening events in 2021—has launched Torchlight, a community-based multimedia arts and production studio for local youth and adults in downtown Belfast.

Torchlight’s aims are to provide access to production tools and skills, build long-term sustainability for local public broadcast media outlets, create new education and mentorship opportunities, and improve community connection through storytelling and social connection.

Through a partnership with the Belfast Area High School’s (BAHS) Extended Learning Opportunity (ELO) program, Torchlight will incubate and house a new youth multimedia mentorship pilot program. Battaglia and Solomon Heifets, ELO Coordinator for BAHS, have begun identifying an inaugural class of students to work directly with Battaglia. 

"We are so excited to be giving our students the opportunity to explore careers in audiovisual and media production,” says Heifets. “They are hungry for this, and it's been inspiring to see how motivated students have been in organizing themselves to make this partnership a possibility." 

Over the course of a semester, the inaugural cohort of students will learn about writing and storytelling, photography, and audio production (such as podcasting) through self-directed projects. They will then work in collaborative teams to create a capstone video project which will be shown at a public screening at the Colonial Theater on Tuesday, June 11, 2024. Work from the 20-week pilot program will also air on Belfast Community Radio and Belfast Community Television.

“Providing students with the opportunity to explore media and cutting edge technology can not only expand their future career aspirations but provide much-needed service back to their secondary school in the form of media support and promotion of programs and opportunities,” says Assistant Principal Jess Woods. “It’s a win-win for everyone!”

Multi-media production is not only valuable as a form of creative and artistic self-expression but as a “hard skill” in the twenty-first century information economy. Content creation is on track to be a $70 billion industry in 2030. More than two-thirds of Americans regularly listen to podcasts or audiobooks, and virtually every large private, non-profit or government entity now employs social media managers to produce and post multi-media content.

To learn more about participating, mentoring, donating, and supporting any of the above efforts, visit chrisbattaglia.info, email torchlightmaine@gmail.com, or stop by the Torchlight headquarters at 158 High Street by chance or appointment.

About Chris Battaglia

Chris Battaglia has produced multimedia and storytelling for 15 years, working with local businesses and nonprofits, including Maine Farmland Trust, Island Institute, WERU, Belfast Community Co-Op, GO Logic, Points North Institute, Pica, StoryCorps’ One Small Step program, and Waterfall Arts. His work has been funded by the New England Foundation for the Arts, the Kindling Fund via SPACE’s national regranting program through Andy Warhol Foundation, Maine Community Foundation, and the Maine Arts Commission.


Press Release

Filter Press Releases

Name or Keyword


Date Range

Contact Information

Chris Battaglia

158 High Street
Belfast  ME  04915