By Kathyrn Andes
“Sacred Heart students have talent behind the camera and in front of it,” said Professor Gary Russo.
Professor Russo has been teaching production classes in the School of Communications, Media, and the Arts at Sacred Heart University for the past five years, and has created a new production class where students create a weekly variety show.
The students in Professor Gary Russo’s TV production course are learning industry skills and highlighting the talent of SHU students in the arts.
“The TV show is divided up into segments, and our roles differ per segment in order to strengthen our experience in all the positions we are interested in for the future,” said sophomore and Communications and Media Arts major Justyna Jablonka. “Throughout all the segments my roles include: producer, director, co-host, technical director, stage manager, as well as being on the writing and editing teams,”
Each week, students in the course find talent to highlight in the SHU’s Got Talent show. All of the guests on the show are current SHU students, including members of the dance, band, and choir programs.
“SHU’s Got Talent consists of several different segments with a variety of acts including a musical performance from Sacred Heart’s Theatre Arts Program, Dance Company, Improv Troupe, singer Marisa Tache as well as comedian Greg Argenio,” said sophomore Media Arts major Shannon Szefinski.
The students of CM 322A, TV production, find that the course teaches them valuable experience in the TV production field and prepares them for a job after college.
“As a student in the class, I feel so much more knowledgeable about the field. I am very grateful that I had the opportunity to take this course and challenge my abilities,” said Jablonska. “I appreciate Professor Russo’s effort and work he puts into this so that we can learn, and the School of Communication, Media, and the Arts for offering this course because I can experience my field on a much more intense level.”
Students in the course are responsible for taping, editing, hosting, producing, directing, managing, reaching out to performers and booking events throughout the semester.
“We had the performers of the show Ordinary Days come in and sing a song from the show. We recorded them and took footage, we edited the line cut and took different footage from different cameras and placed it where we needed it,” said senior Media Arts major Matthew Henshaw.
As of now, the content of the SHU’s Got Talent TV show will not be posted for viewing purposes, but may be highlighted on the School of Communications, Media, and the Arts website.
Students in the class can include the work they have produced in their portfolios, resume, and on personal websites.
“There is no better class to take to prepare you for a career in TV production; you’re functioning as a production company and you play every role. It’s almost better than the real world because you get to do everything instead of just one concentrated role,” said Szefinski.