Workshops

Workshops with festival guests are now available to the public and free to attend. Participants must register for workshops as space is limited. Tickets are issued on a first come, first served basis via this link: WORKSHOP REGISTRATION.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2017


How to Shoot, Edit and Perform Stunts for Film Production
Jamie Northrup ’04, 10:00 AM, W&M Hall

This workshop is aimed at actors, directors, and cinematographers who are interested in how to safely and successfully film action/violence.  We will cover the basics of how to perform, film and edit a fight scene.  Participants will be given the chance to act and film a stunt. Capacity: 20 participants. This workshop is only available to current students.
ABOUT JAMIE NORTHRUP ‘04
While at W&M, Jamie Northrup was a math major, president of the breakdancing club and captain of the gymnastics team.  Since graduating, he has worked as an acrobatic slamdunker, documentary filmmaker, NYC public school teacher, app developer, stuntman, stunt coordinator, cinematographer and editor.  For the past 7 years Jamie has split his time between being a union stuntman and a steadicam operator.  Jamie lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife and 3 cats.

Essentials of Production Sound
Matt Sonnenfeld ’12, 1:00 PM, Reeder Media Center

Always necessary, but often overlooked, sound is the number one tell of a student or amateur film. We place so much emphasis, and so much of our budget, on producing pretty pictures, and are ready to assume that sound will figure itself out, or as is so often the case, that we can just “have a friend hold the boom.” But sound is an art that takes years to master and a technical inclination for the operator. Essentials of Production Sound is designed to teach the fundamentals of sound for film in a digital world. Topics will include the physics of sound, microphone choice, boom technique, wireless microphones, the foundation of sound mixing for digital filmmaking, and how they all come together to influence our choices to get the best sound possible. Capacity: 25 participants.
ABOUT MATTHEW SONNENFELD ‘12
Matthew Sonnenfeld, W&M class of 2012, is a location sound mixer based in the New York City area. Matthew was a Literary and Cultural Studies major and is also a proud alum of the Media Center. Time spent in multiple departments on and off set has given Matthew a unique understanding of the needs of various types of productions from feature film, short film and television to reality TV, and even new media and corporate. Matthew’s work has been featured in projects for Twitter, MTV, NFL Network, and Great American Country and has included national commercial campaigns for Pepsi, Wyndham Hotels, TiVo, Sephora and Under Armour.

This Is Perfect, Now Change Everything: A Shallow Perspective on Editing
Sean Cusack ’11, 2:00 PM, Reeder Media Center

Editing film and television is a bit like being Neville Longbottom at Hogwarts – everyone is cooler than you, nobody will dance with you at the parties, and people try to put flaming hats on your head. The role of the editor is the odd man out of the media realm’s major storytelling roles in that their goal is for nobody to notice their work. So what do they do? More or less: warp reality, yell at computers and – in some cases – deal with uncensored, nude Long Island comedians. This is a discussion of the role of the editor in the narrative-crafting food chain, the truths of reality television, and how to break into the industry with no experience, no luck, and a resume made from two very bad short films from W&M’s 24 hour film competition. From Morton Hall, to the halls of some Bostonian murder hotel, to the editing chair of Impractical Jokers – and even the time he asked both Abbi and Ilana from Broad City what they did at the company on two different ocassions and died a little inside – Sean will talk about his experiences, his influences, and his philosophy behind a job he secretly really likes – even if his job is only to make other people look good. Capacity: 30 participants.
ABOUT SEAN CUSACK
Sean Cusack (W&M ’11) wanted to be a Criminologist, but began working in TV as a joke when there was a federal hiring freeze immediately after graduating. He has gone on to work with the editing teams behind truTV’s hit series Impractical Jokers, TV Land’s The Jim Gaffigan Show, and TBS’s The Detour from Jason Jones and Samantha Bee. He is no fun and can speak a little French.

Steadicam & Theory of Moving Shots
Jamie Northrup ’04, 3:00 PM, Reeder Media Center

This workshop is aimed at directors and cinematographers who are interested in learning how and when to use a Steadicam.  In this workshop, participants will learn about steadicam equipment/accessories, how to choreograph a long-take steadicam shot and how to think about moving shots. Capacity: 20 participants.
ABOUT JAMIE NORTHRUP ‘04
While at W&M, Jamie Northrup was a math major, president of the breakdancing club and captain of the gymnastics team.  Since graduating, he has worked as an acrobatic slamdunker, documentary filmmaker, NYC public school teacher, app developer, stuntman, stunt coordinator, cinematographer and editor.  For the past 7 years Jamie has split his time between being a union stuntman and a steadicam operator.  Jamie lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife and 3 cats.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24, 2017


Continuities of Short Form Screen Comedy
Kevin Flanagan ’06, 11:00 AM, Kimball Theatre Screening Room

In the spirit of the 30th anniversary of Improvisational Theatre at the College of William and Mary, this workshop examines the past and future of “short form” screen comedy (everything from one-reel “cinema of attractions” joke films to contemporary sketch comedy television shows to Vine), arguing that this mode of comic representation has always relied on 1) a core understanding of comedy commonplaces and 2) a mastery of different modes of presentation, awareness of audiences, and a sense of media history. We will draw from a diverse selection of examples and will brainstorm how long-term continuities (such as timing, “the bit,” the idea of “game”) apply to contemporary forms of screen comedy. This workshop is conducted with the assumption that comedy-making and pursuing careers in comedy are naturally complemented by lessons from film and television history. In addition to current students, this workshop is available to W&M alumni who were members of the Improvisational Theatre organization as part of the I.T. 30th Anniversary programming track. Capacity: 35 participants.
ABOUT KEVIN FLANAGAN ‘06
Dr. Kevin M. Flanagan (WM class of ’06) is Visiting Lecturer in English and Film Studies at the University of Pittsburgh. He has published essays in Critical QuarterlyFrameworkAdaptation, and the Journal of British Cinema and Television, as well as in numerous academic anthologies and reference books. He was the co-curator of the June 2016 “Architecture on TV” season of screenings at the British Film Institute’s National Film Theatre, and is currently co-editing a dossier for the journal Screen on traditions of architectural experience and popularization on British television. An alumnus of I.T., he currently performs with These Guy Are Sick, a group that specializes in improvisational performances at videogame conventions. He is a co-founder of the media events company Content Productions.

The Making of Teesri Dhun (The Third Tune)
Professor Claire Pamment  – Theater & Film, 12:00 PM, Reeder Media Center

This session includes a film presentation and discussion on the staging and making of Teesri Dhun (The Third Tune) a devised documentary theatre on transgender lives and struggles in Pakistan, developed out of Claire Pamment and Shahnaz Khan’s SSHRC-supported research with transgender communities. Directed by Claire Pamment and Iram Sana, Teesri Dhun has been performed by a transgender cast in Lahore 2015, at US universities in Spring 2016, and was again revived in Pakistan in Fall 2016.
Pakistani transgender communities, known as khwajasaras (hijras), were declared a criminal tribe in the nineteenth century by British colonial laws, and pitched outside the heteronormative binary. Despite a recent Supreme Court victory through which khwajasaras have been recognized as a distinct gender identity, they continue to be highly marginalized, and are often framed by contemporary media as deviant to a moral Muslim habitus. Khwajasaras’ resistance to dominant heteronormativity has often utilized their vibrant cultural traditions—from badhai performances of dancing, singing, and issuing irreverent repartee in wedding and birth ceremonies to spiritual roles at Sufi shrines. Teesri Dhun combines these culturally embedded practices, historical research and personal narratives, as performers share their experiences of being neither man nor woman, in a search for God, love, and identity. Capacity: 30 participants.
ABOUT CLAIRE PAMMENT
Claire Pamment is Assistant Professor of World Theatre in the Department of Theatre, Speech and Dance at the College of William and Mary, a Fellow of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, Worship and the Arts (2015/16) and has taught at various institutions in Pakistan. Her research and performance praxis foregrounds marginality, comedy, and transgendering, with regional focus on South Asia. She is performance reviews editor for Ecumenica and author of Comic Performance in Pakistan: The Bhānd (Palgrave, 2017).

Storytelling and Your Perspective
Randall Taylor ‘09 & Ayesha Gilani Taylor, 12:30 PM, Cohen Career Center

As storytellers, our voices are shaped by our own experiences. Often we don’t realize how our lives have shaped our perspective and determined the stories we like to tell. The unique perspective each individual has can be both an asset and an obstacle when telling stories.
In this workshop, Ayesha and Randall will discuss the evolution of their careers in film and television. They will share insights they gained along the way from working individually and as a husband and wife team. They will discuss how their own life experiences have shaped their approach to storytelling and what tools, methods, and resources they consider when crafting a piece. Their work includes television, documentaries, commercials, and news and covers a wide range of topics. Please come willing to consider how your own experiences influence your work. Capacity: 40 students.
ABOUT RANDALL TAYLOR ’09
Randall Taylor, Jr. graduated from William & Mary in 2009 with a major in Literary and Cultural Studies, with a concentration in Film, and a minor in Psychology. Upon graduation, he spent a few years working at the place where he was first introduced to his passion for multimedia, the William & Mary Reeder Media Center. Currently, Randall works as a producer, editor and videographer in Voice of America’s Public Relations department where he produces branding material for 45 language services. As a freelancer, some of his clients include Bloomberg, Discovery, National Geographic, PBS, Lexis Nexis and Nationwide. Randall’s versatility is exemplified through his diverse body of work, which includes music videos, television, commercials, educational material, and documentary films.
ABOUT AYESHA GILANI TAYLOR
Ayesha Gilani Taylor is a television anchor, reporter and producer at Voice of America. She is most well-known for her work on the popular television show called Kahani Pakistani (Pakistani Tale), a magazine show watched by millions within and outside of Pakistan. She is also a writer, model, actor, speaker and holder of ten beauty pageant titles ranging from Miss Pakistan World 2009 to Mrs. District of Columbia USA Earth 2016. She currently runs a production team with her husband.
Using her own life experiences, she highlights the common threads between all people, and encourages people to challenge their own stereotypes. As Pakistan’s Dawn News wrote, “While the world has mostly had Pakistan on their minds for the [backlash] it is suffering from the Taliban, some Pakistanis have made the international media for their talent, hard work and commitment. Ayesha Gilani is helping to promote ‘the beautiful land of rich culture and traditions’.”

Filmmaking on a Budget
Aram Vidal, 1:30 PM, Kimball Theatre Screening Room

Finding funding is often thought of as one of the major challenges for a filmmaker. This workshop will be a roundtable discussion focused on successful low-budget filmmaking. Director Aram Vidal will share his own experiences making films on a budget including tips and insights he has gained from his own experience and that of other indie filmmakers he’s collaborated with during his career. Students are encouraged to be prepared to talk about their own experiences and ideas. Capacity: 12 participants.
ABOUT ARAM VIDAL
Cuban filmmaker Aram Vidal began his career as a writer. He won the El Caballo de Coral, Premio Nacional FEU prize and the Pinos Nuevos award which led him to publish his book La gente sí se da cuenta (2007). In 2005 he graduated from the University of Havana with a degree in Communication and started to work as a screenwriter and director at the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC). He has participated in artist residencies in Cuba, Mexico and the United States. His fiction productions include Recursion (2012), Relief (2013), and Cat(2016), which have garnered numerous awards. He is currently working on his debut feature film Blue Fish (El Pez Azul).

The Making and Meanings of A Closer Walk
Eric Sawyer & Tanya Stadelmann, 1:30 PM, W&M Reves Center – Reves Room

This workshop features a Q&A conversation with visiting COLL 300 activist Eric Sawyer, Co-Producer of the AIDS epidemic documentary A Closer Walk, and Tanya Stadelmann, lecturer in W&M Film & Media Studies and a filmmaker and media artist. The workshop will provide attendees a small group opportunity for discussing the making and meanings of the film, appropriate for students interested in documentary production, activist filmmaking, and for those also attending Sawyer’s presentation as part of the COLL 300 class. Capacity: 20 participants.
ABOUT ERIC SAWYER
For more than 30 years Eric Sawyer has served as advisor, activist, and advocate shaping policy in response to the institutional crises brought about by AIDS. Sawyer is a founding member of ACT UP, co-founder of Housing Works, co-founder of Health Global Access Project, Civil Society Partnerships Advisor to UN AIDS, co-producer and senior AIDS advisor on the documentary film, A Closer Walk, and an openly gay man who has been symptomatic with AIDS since 1980.
ABOUT TANYA STADELMANN
Stadelmann’s work has screened at Cannes Film Festival and numerous film festivals around the world. Her research is centered around environmental justice and health issues, and explores theories across disciplines such as sociology, cultural anthropology, ecocriticism, documentary, film and sound studies.

The Changing Landscape of Media
Hannah McCarthy ’12, 3:30 PM, Kimball Screening Room

This workshop will delve into the rapidly growing industries surrounding digital media, unscripted television, and online content distribution, with an emphasis on how “new media” is influencing the film and television landscape. Capacity: 35 participants.
ABOUT HANNAH MCCARTHY ‘12
Hannah McCarthy graduated from William and Mary in 2012 with a double-major in English and Film Studies. After graduating she worked in television production in Washington DC as an Associate Producer before moving to Austin, Texas to work as a Story Producer. She has worked on shows for the Discovery Channel, A&E, TNT, Animal Planet, PBS, and TLC. Hannah is currently a Writer & Producer at Rooster Teeth, a comedy and gaming production company based in Austin, Texas.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2017


The Making of The Russian Woodpecker
Chad Gracia, 10:00 AM, Kimball Theatre Screening Room

A discussion of the story structure of the Sundance-winning film The Russian Woodpecker, and how it helped craft a compelling film that found audiences (and buyers) around the world. In addition to highlights regarding particular dramaturgical issues, Writer/Director Chad Gracia will also discuss aspects of production, from conception to distribution. Capacity: 25 participants.
 ABOUT CHAD GRACIA
Chad has worked in New York theater for nearly 20 years as a producer, dramaturg, and playwright, with a focus on plays in verse. His works have seen productions in various cities in the United States and Europe. He co-wrote Gilgamesh, a drama based on the Sumerian epic, with Pulitzer-Prize winning author Yusef Komunyakaa, and has long collaborated with the American verse playwright Kirk Wood Bromley.The Russian Woodpecker is his first film.

Sell It!
Craig Cackowski ’91, 10:00 AM, PBK Mainstage

Energy, confidence and decisiveness are 90% of the battle in improv, i.e. it’s not so much what you say as when you say it and how you say it. How comfortable you are on stage will have a huge impact on how you’re perceived by the audience. Whether you’re a veteran improvisor or new to the artform, this is the perfect workshop for the performer who needs to practice owning their impulses and delivering them with confidence right away. Prior experience with improv comedy performance is highly recommended for all participants. In addition to current students, this workshop is available to W&M alumni who were members of the Improvisational Theatre organization as part of the I.T. 30th Anniversary programming track. Capacity: 18 participants.
ABOUT CRAIG CACKOWSKI ‘91
Craig Cackowski (W&M ’91) has been seen on your television as a regular cast member on “Drunk History” and as Officer Cackowski on “Community.” Other film and television appearances include “Bajillion Dollar Properties”, “Girlboss”, “Shrink”, “Veep,” “Newsreaders,” “Comedy Bang Bang,” “The Mindy Project,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Trust Us With Your Life,” “Workaholics,” “The Kings Of Summer,” “21 And Over,” and “Year of The Dog.” He has been involved with the iO and iO West Theaters as a performer and teacher since 1992. In Chicago, Craig performed with the Second City Mainstage and ETC, as well as with the National Touring Company. He may also be heard on such podcasts as “The Thrilling Adventure Hour,” “Spontaneanation”, and on his own podcast “Craig’s List” where he makes his wife Carla watch his 100 favorite movies.

Kickstarting Your Documentary: The Logistics of Forgive–Don’t Forget
Austin Journey ’11 & Brad Bennett, 1:00 PM, Kimball Theatre Screening Room

From budgeting and Kickstarter to story planning and post-production, creating an independent feature can be a long and difficult process. Join filmmakers Brad Bennett and Austin Journey as they give an inside look at the planning and creation of their documentary, Forgive-Don’t Forget.
ABOUT AUSTIN JOURNEY ‘11
Having studied film and media in school, Austin (W&M ’11) began freelance work as a video producer in 2011 working with such organizations as Monticello and Hello Studios. Previously, Austin edited the 2011 film Rough Draft which won Best First Feature at the Williamsburg International Film Festival in Brooklyn.
ABOUT BRAD BENNETT
Beginning his career documenting professional surf culture around the world, Brad focused on cinematography and video journalism until he founded Shaking Hands Productions in 2004. The company has garnered numerous awards for cinematography since its inception and has been featured in various publications.