Three students at Springer School and Center won awards for films they made this summer through the Stages for Youth film camp, a Cincinnati program that challenges junior high and high school students to produce a professional-style production in two weeks.
In addition to winning a Stages for Youth award for Best Score, eighth-grader Jake Wuennemann’s film “Gesture” was selected for the 2016 Calgary International Film Festival Youth, and for the 2016 All American High School Film Festival. During the All American festival, which ran from October 7 to 9, Wuennemann’s film was screened in the Times Square AMC Theater. “I especially enjoyed the editing,” said Wuennemann, “and walking around the city shooting the shots we needed.”
Eighth-graders Gabrielle Luckenbach and Ethan Jones, along with recent Springer alumnus Riley Starr, won the Stages for Youth award for Best Direction for their short film “Benny.” “This experience was amazing!” commented Luckenbach. “I liked filming and editing, making new friends and learning about filmmaking.” For Jones, who enjoys writing short stories, scriptwriting was the most enjoyable part of the process.
The 30 students from 15 schools who attended this year’s Stages for Youth camp produced eight short films under the mentorship of film industry professionals. Two of the films produced this summer were recognized at the 2016 White House Student Film Festival.
A central goal of the program is to provide youth an alternative avenue for success, especially for students who struggle in a traditional classroom such as Springer’s students, all of whom have a diagnosed learning disability. Another recent Springer alumnus, Henry Jost, also participated in the program this summer.