There are two components of any great undertaking like Telluride: hard WORK and love. But only the love must show.

Chuck Jones

Sure, there's the pleasure of seeing life-changing films. But plenty of elbow grease goes into producing the Telluride Film Festival. Our hard-working, problem-solving, movie-loving, people-pleasing, get-your-hands-dirty group of dedicated volunteers and staff are known as SHOWCorps. Corps is defined as: an organized body of people acting together - and that is exactly what we are! SHOWCorps is the nuts and bolts of the Festival. What kind of talents can we use? Ushers to finesse the theater crowds. Food servers to work our events and keep the popcorn popping. Muscles to haul gear. Your first step is to apply - we'll figure out where to harness your talents.

This is how to get on-board:


We require our volunteers to work 30+ hours over the course of the Festival weekend, as well as the few days before and after. Individual schedules will vary. In exchange, you will receive a volunteer pass, admission to some of the Festival special events, great Festival schwag, and of course the fun that comes with working with great people.

Although positions are offered first to returning volunteers, we welcome applications from new candidates. The decision to accept and assign volunteers depends on dates of availability, specific skills and overall enthusiasm for working long hours with a smile.

How it works:

  • Please note that in all cases you will need to be in Telluride by Wednesday, September 1st by the early afternoon and stay THROUGH Monday, September 6th.
  • Apply Online: fill out the application and include a resume and a few paragraphs about yourself and why you want to be a part of the Telluride Film Festival team. Application deadline is August 13th, 2021. You must be 21 to apply. The Volunteer Application Form may be downloaded here.
  • Receive an email from us confirming receipt of application.
  • Discuss your application: When we hear back from our return volunteers in July, we’ll re-review your application and email you to set up a call and discuss possibilities.
  • Receive a Specific Assignment: When a volunteer's interests and the Festival's needs fit, volunteers are offered a volunteer assignment within a Festival Department, usually by mid-July.
  • Check-In: All volunteers come to check-in just before their first meeting/training, to get their volunteer pass/tickets and pick up their Vespucci, our staff handbook. All volunteers are required to attend a new volunteer meeting on Wednesday, September 1st beginning around noon. Please note: depending on the department you are assigned to, you may have to attend additional required trainings. You will be notified of these meetings/trainings in plenty of time.
  • Get Your Schedule: You will pick up your Festival schedule the Wednesday before the Festival, September 1st at one of our meetings where you will also meet your department manager.
  • Festivate!

For best performance, please use a PDF Reader application and not your preferred browser window to fill out the Volunteer Form. Once you have completed all the fields using the PDF Reader, save it to your computer with your name in the file name before emailing it back to us.

If you have questions, please email or call 970-369-1140.


The 2021 Production Apprentice application window is now closed.

For those who want the fullest ‘behind-the-scenes’ adventure, we select 8-10 eager applicants as Production Apprentices for an intensive 6 weeks of preparation in Telluride. Remember the Elementary School gym that transforms into a galactic movie palace? That takes many hands and long hours. Carpentry, rigging, painting and other production skills — apprentices acquire a real hands-on view of assembling a world-class event from the ground up.

The 2021 Computer Science Production Apprentice application window is now closed.

The Telluride Film Festival is also looking for a Computer Science Intern (Production Apprentice) to commit to a period of 7 weeks. The I.T. intern will help set up, maintain and break down computer networks in multiple locations as well as help with a variety of staff computer needs. The applicant will be working under the direction of the Festival’s I.T. Manager and the Production Department. When not needed to do work for the I.T. Manager, the intern will work with other PA’s on a variety of tasks. The Telluride Film Festival operates on mostly Macintosh systems and familiarity with troubleshooting Mac systems is an important qualifier. The applicant should also be prepared to train and educate others. Applicants should be able to trouble shoot network problems and a variety of system issues.

Like other volunteers, the Computer Science Production Apprentice will not be compensated monetarily during the 5-day Festival itself, but receive a Festival pass and privileges in exchange for time working during the Festival weekend.

Telluride has the world’s best film festival staff.

Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

Telluride's production apprentice program was simply one of the happiest times of my life. The rewards are profound and immediate when making something worthwhile from the ground up with your hands, and the month of WORK was hardly without its moments of mischief. I guarantee that no one appreciates four days of SHOW more than the people who are putting it on.

Production Apprentice, 2007