At Woodstock Film Festival, New Paltz students star as video producers

SUNY New Paltz’s presence at the annual Woodstock Film Festival has grown steadily over the last decade, and that trend continued in 2017.

New Paltz students produced more than 60 promotional and news videos for the Festival, interviewed film industry professionals and performing stars including Bill Pullman, Summer Phoenix and Giancarlo Esposito, and presented a world premier showing of a new documentary short film, titled “Blackbird.”

“The Woodstock Film Festival is a terrific opportunity for students to meet filmmakers and other industry professionals, hear their stories, learn a bit more about the industry, and also to create deadline-strict, professional quality productions for their reels and resume,” said Assistant Professor Gregory Bray ’00 (Communication and Media), who each year leads Digital Media & Journalism courses designed to prepare aspiring filmmakers to work the Festival in Woodstock, N.Y.

Students in Bray’s one-credit “Woodstock Film Festival” course are tasked with shooting, editing and publishing a series of videos as event coverage and promotion. Many find work with the Festival after graduation.

[View the New Paltz-produced spots on the Festival’s YouTube page]

The documentary “Blackbird,” which screened for the first time anywhere at this year’s Festival, focuses on Amy Trompetter, a Hudson Valley-based artist and performer who works primarily in the art of puppetry.

“Blackbird” was produced by Digital Media Production majors Kyra Andrews ’17, Alexandria Griffiths ’17, Abby Shaffer ’17 and Paul Spaulding ’17. Read more about that short documentary via this link.

Visit the Department of Digital Media & Journalism online to learn more.