The lights are up and the stage is set for a new television show at SUNY New Paltz.
“Video Remix,” a project spearheaded by Professor Dan Labbato of the Communication and Media department, is a 30-minute variety show meant to showcase the talents of the department to both the campus and New Paltz community.
“We wanted to make a show that shows what the media part of this department is doing,” Labbato said. “Since we were making videos in this department, I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if what we’re making got into the community at large?’ My original idea was to have students create a TV show to do that.”
Each show, which run every Monday at 9 p.m. on Channel 6, has a lead-in, wrap around, theme song and hosts that guide the audience through the show, Labbato said.
Labbato, who worked in general filmmaking as a cameraman, assistant, gaffer and editor for the last 20 years, said while the show is only a trial-run on campus, the goal is to reach the masses by next year.
Students in the class found working on the show helpful, as they were able to gain a sense of a real world experience.
“It was a good experience,” fourth-year student Christina DiNapoli said. “We were taught how to actually film it, and professor Labbato is very intelligent.”
Labbato’s idea came to fruition after discussions within the Radio and TV Production major led to a new class being formed to focus solely on using Avid, an industry-standard editing program and Labbato’s creation of a “Digital Archive.”
Projects by students in Professor Greg Bray’s Senior Seminar class were uploaded to the archive along with work from other classes. The amount of footage stored was “years’ worth” of material that would be forever digitized for the editing class to use.
“I didn’t want them to go have to collect information in the field to bring back because that would dilute the focus on just editing itself,” Labbato said.
After this, Labbato knew he needed a cohesive theme to tie the material together.
“I thought, how do I tie together this conglomeration for all this work together? Then I proposed to create hosts,” Labbato said.
In a variety show format, each piece is shown after being introduced by the hosts. Each segment is approximately eight minutes long, allowing three pieces of student work to be showcased in each show.
On the other end of the lens, classes began working on shooting the three, 30-minute episodes planned to air this semester while students from the school of Fine and Preforming Arts acted as the hosts.
Other classes were in charge of shooting the tie-ins, all while keeping in mind the theme and other aspects of the show.
“It kind of shows the interdisciplinary, crossing of classes that we are trying to stress as a department,” Labatto said.
Student submissions are welcome for future shows, Labatto said. In fact, he hopes that at some point, Video Remix would serve as a point for student work to be recognized.