Elliot Grove - Founder

Despite being unable to watch TV or films until his late teens due to the constraints of his Amish background, Elliot was curious about art and film. He worked first as a scenic artist (painting backgrounds). He started Raindance as a thought experiment: Could you make a movie with no training, no experience or no money. When British filmmakers like Christopher Nolan started making zero budget films, Elliot started  Raindance Film Festival, as well as the British Independent Film Awards to showcase their work.


Rory O'Donnell - Courses Director

Following an MA in Ancient & Medieval History, and helping to excavate the most northerly leper colony found in the British Isles, Rory took the obvious next step of training as an actor. His acting career was primarily on the stage, including in the West End directed by Stephen Daldry, although he did once get to shoot aliens on the HMS Belfast. After directing a couple of short films and a period of traveling he started working as a casting director for independent film and became involved with Raindance, running print traffic during the festival. In 2008 he took over as course director and has been running the training for around 2000 students a year since then. In 2012 he began making short films again, which have played at festivals worldwide, and he is currently preparing a first feature.


Suzanne Ballantyne - Head of Programming

Suzanne Ballantyne trained as an actress in London and worked as a performer in the UK and Canada. She started her film career reviewing and critiquing scripts and films for independent producers and film festivals. She has programmed the Raindance Film Festival since 1995. In 1998 she co-founded the British Independent Film Awards. Her first screenplay is about to enter pre-production under the Raindance Raw Talent banner. In 2013 she produced the feature, Love.Honour.Obey - a love triangle - which is heading onto the festival circuit.


David Martinez - Festival Producer


Harvey Puttock - Filmmaker in Residence/Tech Genie

Harvey, who is often described as the Brad Pitt of Raindance*, studied BA in Video Production and Film Studies at the University of West London and he hates writing about himself in the third person. He has worked in various production roles from camera to editing, including behind the scenes videos for BBC productions such as Call The Midwife and The Interceptor. Harvey started as an Editing intern in early 2015 and now works full time as the Filmmaker in Residence and IT support (have you tried turning it off and on again?) at Raindance.
*once, sarcastically, but who's counting.


Martyna Szmytkowska -Programmer & Programme Coordinator

Martyna studied MA in Film in Poland and since graduation she’s been working in various roles in film industry. She has been organising local film festivals in Poland, running talks in film clubs and for 5 years has been an agent in one of the Polish leading talent agencies. Martyna has been working with Raindance since the 2012 RDFF, initially on the Raindance Postgraduate Degree. Currently Martyna programmes feature films for the festival and is responsible for programme coordination.


Joseph Supple-Turnham - Marketing Manager & Room Bookings

Joe is Marketing Manager at Raindance - taking care of Raindance's social media, newsletters, and contributing to the website. He's a sucker for a good coming-of-age movie.


Baptiste Charles-Aubert, Postgraduate Degree Registrar

JBaptiste is the Raindance Postgraduate Degree Registrar. Hailing from the sunny south of France where he earned a masters in business, he used to be one of our fabulous interns and he is now managing the administrative and organisation side of Raindance Postgraduate Film Degree. He is the first point of contact for our international MA/MsC students and she supervises their individual relationships with film industry advisors and mentors.