Tamaqua Area High holds fifth annual Independent Film Festival
NICOLE MATSAGO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Tamaqua Area High School tudents begin to enter the film festival event in their formal attire, first stopping on the "red carpet" to have their pictures taken by paparazzi.
At Tamaqua Area High School, the right brain matters, too.
In accordance, rather than just hosting a science fair that supports the left-brained students, it hosts an event that helps right-brained students display their artistic abilities.
Lori Remmel, a teacher at TAHS and the organizing faculty member of this event, claims that the IF Festival started out as an effort on behalf of the Schuylkill Youth Conference Committee and the Media Club.
Originally, it was intended to facilitate a feeling of school unity and diversity, but has since become strictly an event hosted by the Media Club.
In fact, the event has inspired many students to pursue degrees in the arts because of their exposure to it at TAHS. One such student, Eric Hillegass, a 2006 graduate of TAHS and also considered the "founding father" of the fest, is about to graduate from Drexel University with a degree in film-making in June.
The festival, a black-tie event which includes a red-carpet lined with paparazzi and adoring fans, in which film-makers are able to showcase their talent, and the actors and actresses at the school are able to highlight their own dramatic abilities.
Anyone can participate in the event by submitting his or her own films, whether produced at school for a project or at home for fun.
This year's festival included a wide variety of student films ranging from serious and sentimental to downright silly and comical.
Some students, such as the students of Mrs. Segedy's classes, created films for class projects. The students in Mrs. Segedy's classes created a series of films for the "Three Words Project," a project that the class found online and incorporated into the festival. Students filmed themselves, and other students and faculty at TAHS, displaying three words that were sentimental to them. For example, the start of the film entails a faculty member at the high school discussing his three words: "Another Door Opens."
Another film project by Shauna Bannan, "Forget, Forgive, Forget" was a music video for a local band. The film highlighted a song of the bands, as well as her own film talent.
Some students submitted their work for a Language Arts project, choosing to focus on an epic of World Literature Oedipus Rex. The student from the class, Matt Sanchez, was asked to modernize the epic and his version chose to incorporate Michael Jackson music to give it a new spin.
Other works included Colin Mehalshick's documentary entitled "THS Drama Club Trip to NYC," Ryan Miorelli and Nicolai Kabana's comedy film "A Good Old Hike," Robert Craigle's "El Dia Loco De Jose," an experimental film, Brianna Boyle's drama "Prom Date," Kaitlyn Keich's comedy "The Worst that Could Happen," and Jackie Stewart's "Once upon a Dream," a stop motion animation.