So what happens to student projects after New York Film Academy (NYFA) Broadcast Journalism students graduate? In the case of Alisa Arvind, they take on a life of their own.
Now a published author, in 2016 Alisa posted a video about the Holi Hai Festival in New York City on YouTube. The news package was produced for one of her Broadcast Journalism classes. Since then, it’s had 100,000+ views!
Three years ago she wrote: “They call it ‘the happiest festival of NYC!’ Holy Hai is an Indian festival of Spring where people come to dance their hearts out and get colorful.” And colorful it is… It wouldn’t surprise me if Alisa was still getting some of that color out of her hair…
NYFA Broadcast Journalism grad Gillian Kemmerer, now based in Moscow, continues her journey through Eurasia. Most recently she was in China.
More than 120 Under-11 players arrived at the Little Wolf Arena in Beijing last month to compete in an event run by the Kontinental Hockey League coaching staff. Gillian reports the kids were competing for the chance to head to Astana, Kazakhstan and Sochi, Russia for two tournaments this April.
Kunlun Red Star is sending a youth team to the Gazprom Cup for the first time in franchise history. The young athletes participated in workshop activities, as well as actual games in which their skill levels were assessed.
Studying in New York City provides students with opportunities that are simply not available anywhere else. Recently, New York Film Academy (NYFA) Broadcast Journalism student Nicole Abebe was able to cover New York Fashion Week as an accredited journalist.
Nicole was backstage and on the runway. She shot, wrote, and edited her stories—all of which were then distributed by a New York media company.
Obviously, this situation is unique. It is rare a student from any school gets a chance like this. That said, New York City is filled with many tremendous opportunities.
But you have to be here to take advantage of them. And you have to go to the right school to get the skills you’ll need…
New York Film Academy (NYFA) Alum Federica Polidoro has kept busy since graduating the 4-week Broadcast Journalism workshop in July 2016, building a steady and impressive portfolio of interviews with several high-profile filmmakers and actors for multiple leading publications across the globe.
While at NYFA, Polidoro learned to to identify and make arrangements for story and interview subjects, choose and secure locations, prepare equipment, arrange preparation and setup of the locations, and make final technical checks. One piece she shot at NYFA was about the astrologer Angel Eyedealism. “NYFA is in my heart and I have wonderful memories about the program I attended,” Polidoro says about her experience at the Academy.
Polidoro currently works as a freelance journalist for several primary publishing companies in Italy, and has already conducted several high-profile interviews, particularly in the film and arts industry.
One such Italian media company Polidoro freelances for is GEDI Gruppo Editoriale, and their national newspaper La Repubblica. This includes her work for Repubblica XL, the publication dedicated to music, comics, and entertainment, and L’Espresso, a prestigious weekly news magazine. Polidoro introduced for L’Espresso at the Cannes Film Festival last year, where they released interviews with filmmakers and actors including Sofia Coppola.
For Rolling Stone Italy, Polidoro reviewed Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman directly from Cannes, and was able to interview Best Supporting Actor Oscar nominee and NYFA Guest Speaker Adam Driver. She also interviewed veteran director Terry Gilliam about his decades-old passion project, The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, as well as legendary composer Philip Glass.
Polidoro also works with Gruppo 24 ORE’s Il Sole 24 ORE, primarily with their monthly magazine IL, where she has been able to write longer, more in-depth pieces. She earned a cover story when she interviewed filmmaker Wim Wenders (Wings of Desire;Paris, Texas), one of only a few directors to win the Palme d’Or, Golden Lion, Golden Bear, and an Academy Award.
Polidoro has also interviewed the Coen Brothers for their Netflix and Oscar-nominated film The Ballad of Buster Scruggs andAlfonso Cuarón about his critically lauded film Roma.
Recently, Polidoro was guest of King Mohammed VI and Prince Moulay Rachid of Morocco for the Marrakech Film Festival, together with other selected members of the international press (she was the only Italian female entertainment journalist of the group.)
At Marrakech, Polidoro interviewed Robert De Niro, Julian Schnabel, and Guillermo Del Toro, among others. Soon she will be launching video interviews for IL as well, starting with director James Gray, the Jury President of the Festival.
Polidoro has also recently become a contributor for Cineuropa, the first European portal dedicated to cinema and audiovisual in four languages, for which she interviewed Palme d’Or winner Christian Mungiu. She also works for Oprah Winfrey’s O Magazine, which published her interviews with filmmaker Errol Morris about Wormwood and filmmaker Paul Greengrass about 22 July, as well as a very intriguing interview with directors Verena Paravel and Lucien Castaing-Taylor about their documentary Caniba.
“There is something so exciting in talking with creators that you just become addicted and you finally just set your whole life to enjoy those rare, rarified, and immersive moments of overwhelming happiness and satisfaction,” Polidoro tells NYFA.
The New York Film Academy congratulates Federica Polidoro on all of her hard-earned success so far, and looks forward to following her career in the future. We encourage everyone to check out her stories and interviews!
Of course, they don’t actually broadcast it. It is distributed via Twitter, and features items trending on that platform. The lesson here is that the digital production skills you learn at New York Film Academy (NYFA) can be used in a wide variety of places.
Someone who can attest to that is Alexandra Saeys. The NYFA grad is now creating branded content for a Madrid-based production company. In her own words, she’s “doing videos for brands and companies, so they can promote themselves in media and social networks.”
It’s an another way you can utilize a skill set that encompasses digital production.
Studying in New York City opens up a whole world of possibilities. It’s one of the media capitals of the world. What happens here has an impact everywhere. (I know, spoken with all the humility of a real New Yorker…)
Last week we took a field trip to see how the popular Rachael Ray Show is produced. Now in its fourteenth season, this chat/lifestyle/cooking show continues to be an audience favorite.
That’s Catherine Kobayashi (left) and Christine Schottanes (right) from the instructional staff, with super-student Nicole Abebe on the show’s main set.
We got to go behind the scenes, as well as see how the show is produced from the control room.
Danielsen was at the Oscars representing Danish network TV2. “One of the more fun Sundays,” she said in an epic understatement. NYFA helped teach her digital production skills. Her fashion sense, however, she likely learned somewhere else.
Danielsen recently covered the tragic wildfires in California late last year, as well as covering the United Nations for TV2. In September 2018, Danielsen also reported live from the memorial service for the late Senator John McCain.
Meanwhile, down in Brazil—where it is summer—NYFA grad Daniella Gemignani did the first of two weeks of coverage leading up to the Catholic feast of Ash Wednesday. It’s better known as CARNIVAL. Daniella reports for Globo TV in São Paulo.
Meanwhile, NYFA alum Paula Menezes is reporting on Brazilian sports. (You know, things like “futbal.”) A grad of one of our 8-week Broadcast Journalism workshops, she says she is having the time of her life. She even sent along some visual evidence…
So, we started with the Oscars and that’s how we’ll end. I’d like to thank the Academy… the Beijing Film Academy… for lending me their Academy Award when I visited last September. Giving a lecture at this prestigious school was in itself an honor. But to have the opportunity to hold a genuine Oscar is priceless. Of course, I do have an independent feature film coming out later this year…
As you might imagine, I have written a whole lot of updates since I became Chair of the Broadcast Journalism department at New York Film Academy (NYFA). But, remarkably, this is the first time I can talk about one of our grads writing a book…
Elizabeth Rose was a member of my first graduating class. After leaving NYFA, she worked for a time with a cruise ship company. She shot/edited/produced a daily news program aboard one of the company’s vessels.
But Liz had another goal in mind, something that would take her far away from the tropics. She was determined to climb the Seven Summits — the tallest mountain of each of the seven continents, including Mount Everest. Without a doubt, she is the only NYFA grad to accomplish this feat. And in doing so, she raised funds for wonderful causes such as Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, in Vancouver, British Columbia (Canada).
I suggested to Liz that she take along a video camera. But given it was a choice between 10 pounds/4.5 kilos of camera or 10 pounds/4.5 kilos of food, the camera was left behind. Now Liz has put her adventures down in writing, in a book called Written in the Snow: My Journey To The Seven Summits. It is an incredible tale.
Congratulations Liz, from all of us at the New York Film Academy! We’re proud to have played a part the development of your storytelling skills…
One of the truisms in our field is that you never know where you will find yourself, and what you will be doing there. When planning my career, the idea that I would become a specialist in producing programs about China was never a consideration. Yet Shanghai 1937, the documentary that Evgenia Vlasova and I produced last year, has now been broadcast more than 154 times by public television stations across the United States. It’s been sold to broadcasters in France and Germany too…
Another example is digital journalist Gillian Kemmerer. She used the skills she learned at NYFA to build a new career. She was an on-air anchor/presenter and director of US programming for the financial news service Asset TV. She then received a fellowship to study Russian, in Russia. She has been reporting from Moscow for several months now. She says:
“I interviewed Olympic/Stanley Cup champion Alex Kovalev for Sport Express, and it made the front cover! We chatted for nearly two hours on everything from how video games almost stalled his career to a near-return to the ice last month at age 45. The piece has sparked responses from Darius Kasparaitis and many others. Check out the English language story here.”
Next stop on Gillian’s 2019 world tour is Shanghai. (That’s the Oriental Pearl Radio & Television Tower behind her in the picture below.) I recommended one of my favorite restaurants…
One of the nice things about learning digital broadcast journalism in New York is that the city is one of the media capitals of the world. In fact, you can be walking down the street and discover the six o’clock news being shot at one of the local TV stations. No secrets here… an associate producer hands the anchors some last minute copy, while the weather correspondent is in another part of the studio. He then materializes on the main set, just in time for a little back and forth with the anchors, who then lead into a story about saving money on gym memberships.
Finally, our January short-term students arrived at New York Film Academy (NYFA) last week. Which means this week they are producing their first story. After classroom exercises with camera instructor Daniel Hernandez and TA Fabiola Torres — where they learned what all those numbers on the screen mean — they were off to meet one of downtown New York’s favorite celebrities, the Fearless Girl…
There are many reasons to become a journalist. A number of them involve idealism, and the belief that journalists play an essential role in society. Still, for me, a key factor was that journalism is exciting. No, you aren’t flying off on a helicopter into the sunset every day. Yet everyday there is the possibility that you might.
What is guaranteed is that every day you are going to meet people with important stories to tell. Some of those stories are happy. Others are sad. But they are stories that society needs to hear. And you are the storyteller…
One of my favorite storytellers is New York Film Academy (NYFA) Broadcast Journalism grad Bryanna Reynolds. She lives and works in Australia, and recently she reflected on her career and opportunities:
So what do you do after covering “the red carpet”? For Bryanna, it was onto the Australian Open tennis tournament…
Our students come from everywhere—across the United States, and around the world. We’ve been fortunate to have a number of students from Brazil. One of them is Livia Fernanda. During a cold New York City winter, it’s nice to think of warmer places. But if you take a closer look at the map behind Livia, I think some of those places are a bit too hot! 34 C translates into a toasty 93 F…
Last week we were back in the studio for the 2019 season of NYFA News, our own in-house news magazine. (We use the same type of green-screen effect that Livia does. Only instead of a weather map, we insert banks of TV monitors.)
That’s student Nicole Abebe anchoring the show. Nicole was born in Nigeria, but came to NYFA via London. And while this was her first time as a presenter, she looked and sounded like an experienced pro.
If you want to get an idea of just how exciting that day was, take a look at a short video NYFA instructor Evgenia Vlasova put together. I think it really captures how TV is a collaborative effort—a real “team sport.”
It’s the start of a new year, and graduates of the New York Film Academy (NYFA) Broadcast Journalism school are right in the middle of many of the exciting things that are taking place.
NYFA alum George Colli — now with WTNH in New Haven, Connecticut — was back in Washington, DC to document history in the making, speaking with Representative-elect Jahana Hayes the day before she was sworn into office. Rep. Hayes is the first African American woman and first African American Democrat to represent Connecticut in Congress.
Broadcast Journalism grad Suzane de Oliveira, whoworks for Agence France-Presse (AFP) in Rio de Janeiro, put together a wonderful story about New Year fireworks over the legendary Copacabana Beach. (You can’t get more visual than fireworks!) Her story was likely distributed globally, as AFP serves news organizations around the world.
The end of the year is also a time when production teams take group pictures. Gabriela Matte is a graduate of one of our short-term Broadcast Journalism workshop. She works for media giant Globo, on the first 24-hour news cable channel in Brazil. It’s called, not surprisingly, GloboNews. I often say that TV news is a “team sport,” and Gabriela wrote: “Yes, teamwork with a lot of passion.”
Here’s what she wrote when she first started at GloboNews. “One of the reasons I got the job was my experience abroad, and NYFA is part of it.”
Delphine Dormancy attended the 1-year Broadcast Journalism program. Right now, I think she is working in Beruit, Lebanon. But here in New York she produced a lovely story for the digital outlet Labneh&Facts. “What do Hummus, refugees, New York City and a pair of Lebanese siblings have in common? Well, a passion for good, home-made food and doing good, of course!”
BTW, how many of you reading this have eaten lebneh? Trust me, it’s wonderful. What regular yogurt yearns to become…
Finally, short-term Broadcast Journalism workshop graduate Alexandra Salandy is working in the news department of FOX5 New York. She tells us, “I am a production assistant here. I help cut the teases and VOs and I also help the assignment desk, and assign reporters to editors.”
Lots happening at New York Film Academy (NYFA) over the past couple of weeks, and away from NYFA too. The September 8-week Broadcast Journalism workshop students graduated earlier this month. There they are below, along with instructors Daniel Hernandez and Evgenia Vlasova. The graduates come from (left to right) New York, Ukraine, New Orleans, Norway via London, and Brazil. (The instructors are originally from Mexico and Russia, although I believe they are now citizens of Brooklyn.)
The day after graduation, the 8-week and 1-year students got a behind-the-scenes tour of NBC News. Col. Jack Jacobs, an MSNBC contributor as well as Chair of NYFA’s Veterans Advancement Program, showed them how a network news operation works. In the picture below, they are on set of the NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt.
Later they were on a “live” set, for an up-close and personal look at the production of AM Joy, with Joy Reid. Then they went to the control room where the program was being assembled, and sent out “live.”
I think everyone found the tour fascinating, even though we weren’t able to visit the Saturday Night Live set. Apparently a number of the sets for that night’s show were still being built.
Instructor Evgenia Vlasova made some news last week too. She was back home to Khabarovsk, in Russia’s Far East, to see her family for the holidays. And she was also back on the air, on the morning show that for many years she hosted and co-produced. Who says “you can never go home”?
And as far as I know, Genia is the only person in the Russian Far East with a NYFA hoodie. But who knows, maybe she will recruit some potential students…
Summer Session graduate Mariana Janjacomo has been busy as well. She writes: “Back in Brazil, I’ve been working as a freelance journalist for a lot of media companies… When I was in New York, I got to interview three Hollywood stars for the Capricho website; it is the biggest website for teenagers in Latin America. Lights and camera were already set up, but it was very challenging to interview them in English. My questions were in the final version of the video too, so I’m glad I had to a chance to practice that kind of interview at NYFA.
Among the stars she interviewed were Blake Lively and Anna Kendrick, who are appearing in the film A Simple Favor.
Eulogio Ortiz is a longtime friend, and a former colleague at WNET here in New York. These days he is the director of the PBS NewsHour Weekend. While it is a nationally-distributed network program, and is shot in a state-of-the-art studio, he still uses something as simple as a felt-tip pen and a spiral notebook to determine the best placement of cameras, air talent, and guests on the set. Granted, it’s analog, but there are no batteries to go dead.
Congratulations to NYFA Broadcast Journalism grad Sarah Keoghan, who was one of a small group of young journalists chosen for positions at the Sydney Morning Herald. She writes:
“Eight of us were selected out of 900 applicants, and in the current media sphere in Australia, a full-time job is unheard of, and I am beyond stoked. I’m officially a reporter! Thanks again for all your amazing help during my time at NYFA. It is truly an experience I will never forget.”
And speaking of graduates, last week the students in our September 12-week Evening Broadcast Journalism workshop wrapped up their time at NYFA. That’s Hands-on-Camera instructor Daniel Hernandez on the left, although he looks youthful enough to be mistaken for a student.
NYFA alum Federica Polidoro has one of the best jobs in the world. I’m serious… She travels throughout Europe, and beyond, covering the motion picture industry. Earlier this month she was in Morocco, at the Festival International du Film de Marrakech. Legendary director Martin Scorsese was there too, to present an award to equally-legendary actor Robert DeNiro. Federica was able to interview DeNiro later…
Brazilian graduate Daniel Fideli covers sports for media giant Globo. Last week he posted on Facebook about this story:
“Football and motorsport. Finally I manage to get these two passions together in the same story.”
The holidays are rapidly approaching, and that means the Broadcast Journalism Update is going on hiatus until the New Year. Later this week, I am flying to Da Nang, in Vietnam, as I am the Executive Producer of an independent feature film called Invisible Love which is shooting there. Joining me is NYFA Acting for Film graduate Kazy Tauginus. Kazy has a major role in the film. You may have seen him in Denzel Washington’s most recent film, The Equalizer II. Kazy played a really bad guy. (Who died a really bad death.)