Dance, film students collaborate on video project

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Wave Staff Report

CULVER CITY — Students in the Academy of Visual and Performing Arts at Culver City High School have combined the school’s film and dance programs to produce a video of the 2020 Dance Concert.

“We wanted to shoot at the beach, but it was way too windy and sand was blowing everywhere so we had to find a new location,” said Culver City High School junior and AVPA dance student Sophia Binder. “It might even be better than what we originally imagined.”

Summing up the title of this year’s AVPA Dance Concert, Binder is one of 50 students from both AVPA Dance and Film who worked in partnership to put together “Unexpected, An AVPA Collaboration with Dance and Film.”

This year’s Dance Concert is about living and responding to life during the pandemic. All students were outdoors for their dances, all masked and socially distanced, in multiple locations around Culver City.

Seeing the upside of the pandemic circumstances, freshman dance student Zaria Jefferson said, “It was fun to dance outside and see my classmates in person for the first time.”

Victoria Montenegro, a sophomore dance student said, “The film kids were really nice. It was cool to watch them work, how they set up the cameras and got different kinds of shots.”

True to the “Unexpected” title again, the artists had to postpone the dance concert because the small group film shoots were rained out.

The film will air on YouTube for one night only, Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. There will be a live question and answer  session after the show with the choreographers and filmmakers.

“This dance-for-camera is a first experience for all of the dance company members,” said Carol Zee, AVPA’s creative director for Dance at Culver City High. “The filmmakers were so great – each dance will take on a different life with the vision of the directors and the editors. It’s a true and very exciting collaboration.”

The students are excited to see the end product as well.

Senior dance student Kaylee Lee said, “This is the first time I’ve done a collaboration with film. It will be cool to see their visual interpretation of my movement and vision for the piece. I have no idea how it’s going to turn out so I’m excited to see it.”

In addition to Dance and Film, AVPA and art students will be featured as transitions between the dance films.

“I wanted to highlight all the great visual art that is happening on campus, both day classes and AVPA” Zee said.

Following the Dec. 3 YouTube presentation, the show will continue to be viewable after the fact on AVPA.org/dance.