Testimonials

CHARLIE CRACKNELL
3-WEEK HIGH SCHOOL DIGITAL FILMMAKING
LOS ANGELES

My son, Charlie Cracknell arrived home in Dubai safely last night, happy and full of wonderful stories of his experience at your summer camp! Just wanted to say a huge ‘thank you’ to you and all of your staff for looking after him and for the fantastic experience he had. He said he learned so much, made tons of friends and had one of the best summers ever. He will definitely be back at NYFA next summer, either to your campus or the one in New York — we think for slightly longer than 3 weeks this time though, as he is now more desperate than ever to learn as much as possible!

The comment that he texted on his third day into the program really stood out to me – “I am beyond excited about tomorrow, the next day and the weeks ahead!”

Thank you and best regards,

Sassy Cracknell

HELÉNE LEONARD
4-WEEK HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL THEATRE
NEW YORK CITY

To Whom it May Concern,

We sent you a little girl with stars in her eyes and impossible dreams. You sent us back a young woman more sure than ever what she wants to do with her life.

Yes, it cost us and yes, it took some guts to blindly send our baby halfway across the world to strangers. But hell yes, it was worth it, and for that we would like to thank everyone who was part of this dream come true for Heléne.

We have heard so many names since she returned, impossible to remember who is who, but from Chad and Kenny (tap) and Bronson who plays in Phantom to “the best accompanist in the world,” Rachel we think, and Mike at the dorm and many, many more — maybe you know this, but you have all contributed greatly to “the most amazing time of her life!”

She has informed us that being home is “only temporary.” How we’re going to accomplish this is an open question, but it seems clear that you haven’t seen the last of this one!

May God bless you all!

Kindest regards,

John & Nerine Leonard

RHETT GOLDMAN
1-WEEK TWEEN ACTING FOR FILM
NEW YORK CITY

Dear David Klein,

I would like to thank you for the great week. I had a ton of fun and learned so much that will help me in my transition from theatre to acting for film. I loved the program, and being in New York. I hope I can come back next year.

Thank you, once again.

Rhett Goldman

CHARLOTTE DERA
4-WEEK HS ACTING FOR FILM
NEW YORK CITY

This email serves to confirm that Charlotte Dera has arrived home safely. I would like to take a moment in thanking all of you at NYFA’s Summer Camp Program, the teachers on duty, and your admin staff. It was by far one of the best experiences of Charlotte‘s life. Thank you for taking care of her. A special word of thanks goes to Blake Babbitt who traveled all the way to South Africa to open the doors for Charlotte. I also thank Hayley Roberts from the SA Audition; her communication with me was always patient and helpful. Charlotte is hoping to see you again in the near feature.

BREEANA KOVELMAN
12-WEEKEND TEEN FILMMAKING
LOS ANGELES, CA

“I can’t watch a movie the same way anymore,” says Breeana Kovelman. “I think, ‘That’s a good shot.’ ‘Look at that angle!'” The 14-year-old got a new perspective on filmmaking – a hobby since seven – after attending New York Film Academy’s High School Summer Film Camp. “In the first hour of my first class, I operated a dolly,” she says. “And what better teachers? They all work in the Industry.” Her parents had chosen NYFA’s 12-weekend, $1,500 program after viewing film school Web sites. An open house at the Universal Studios back lot, where the classes take place, sealed the deal. “Trams pass by while you’re filming, and someone says, ‘There’s the next Steven Spielberg.'” HD cameras, access to locations such as Jaws Lake, and teachers for screenwriting, storyboarding, and lighting were all a step up from the projects she’d made at home (and in which she was the producer, director and star) or at her elementary school film camp (think: Star Wars meets Harry Potter). Kovelman’s first NYFA film was a five-minute romantic comedy with seven speaking roles. The novice director enjoyed the experience so much, she signed up for a second year of the program. “I decided to work on my cinematography. The second film I made has just two lines of dialogue.”

VAN LEWIS, MOTHER OF DAVID
3-WEEK TEEN DIGITAL FILMMAKING
LOS ANGELES, CA

Dear Liz, Morgan and everyone at NYFA at LA,

I cannot say a big enough thank you to you all – David has obviously had an thoroughly enjoyable time with you. He has talked more or less non-stop since he landed yesterday morning, pausing only to go on Facebook to contact all the new friends he’s made from around the world. Within 10 minutes of being in the front door he was already proudly showing us his second film. He’s now trying to calculate how on earth he might be able to earn enough money to do another course next year! “Awesome” is the word he keeps repeating! He says it’s been the best three weeks of his life so far and he has grown immeasureably as a result.

From a parent’s point of view he’s obviously been well looked after and the fact he didn’t miss us, tells me how much of a success the course was at keeping them busy and focused. I can appreciate how much hard work goes on behind the scenes to make it so worthwhile. From my initial enquiries to keeping in touch, you’ve been brillliant. Thanks.

Please pass on our sincere thanks to everyone involved and if you would like me to act as a referee for any other parent in Britain considering sending their child to a NYFA course, I would be delighted – either forward this email or put them in touch.

Regards and best wishes,

Val

CINDY I. WANERMAN, MOTHER OF ALEX
ONE-WEEK TEEN MOVIE CAMP

Last Summer, my son, Alex Wanerman attended the one-week program.

Today, March 20, 2004 his film received top honors at the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania. The panelists compared him to Chaplin! Alex’s film was by far the best, and the most professional.

Thank you for all that you taught him. I would recommend this program to anyone and everyone!

JAY FISHER
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

I am writing this email to tell you what an amazing program you have. I attended a four week high school film camp at LOS ANGELES last summer (2003). It was by far one of the best experiences of my life. I was able to leave the program with a strong body of work (3 short 16mm films), which proved to be invaluable when I applied to film schools. I was accepted to both NYU and USC’s film production programs. I will be attending USC next fall to begin what I hope will be a life long career in the film industry. The New York Film Academy solidified my interest in pursuing a career in filmmaking. Thank for giving me the resources I needed to get my foot in the door. I hope that with my experience gained from NYFA and USC film school that I will be able to live my childhood dream. THANK YOU!

MARC RIPPER
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP

Just to let you know what I’ve been up to since the summer of 1999: I’ve graduated from high school and am currently enrolled as a sophomore at the North Carolina School of the Arts, School of Filmmaking. The past year has just been great–learning and gaining experience for a future career in the industry, including hands-on work with crews and in the classroom, and meeting other students who are just as passionate about filmmaking.

Outside of the school, I have joined on as a company director to develop a production company with someone I met at school, along with his brother. We currently have several members working collaboratively. The name is Umphenour Productions. If you’d like to know more about the company, please take a look at www.umphenour.com.

Well, that’s what is new with me. I’m glad you’re developing new programs to open it up to more people. Again, it was a great experience that I think many potential filmmakers can benefit from. Thank you.

JORDAN MARKS
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
DISNEY STUDIOS, FLORIDA

I just wanted to let you know what an amazing experience it was. I will never forget my time there… What made the camp such a wonderful experience, was the influence from staff and instructors. They really created a fun learning environment and I would recommend that program to anyone. I just wanted to thank you for creating such an exciting program.

KAREEM HAMMAD
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

I made so many new friends and I also received a wonderful introduction to filmmaking. This definitely strengthened my initial thought about going to film school. Every time I see a movie, I think about continuity, lighting, angles and editing. The program is so great. I had the best summer ever…

CYNTHIA HALL, MOTHER OF EVAN HALL
4-WEEK TEEN ACTING CAMP
PARIS, FRANCE

Want to thank you, Bella, Lise and Frank for all the work you put into organizing the high-school film program in Paris. I can only speak for Evan (though I am sure this goes for all the students) when I say that he gained more than I could have hoped for. This was the first time that Evan worked in a group of colleagues that share his same passion and have as much experience as he has. He has come away from the program with much confidence and maturity. As a parent, that is all you ever hope for from their experiences. You all do a fabulous job and give these students a clear insight into this very complex craft. Bravo!

BRIAN VANNUCCI
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP

My husband and I are writing to the NYFA to express our many thanks for giving our son Brian such a wonderful and delightful experience during this past summer. A special word of thanks goes to Michael Sandoval for creating such a learning environment, motivation and support for Brian, and as a result he walked away with a beautiful and positive experience and will pursue the film in the future. As parents we were very proud to see the final product at the Premiere and extremely impressed with what he has accomplished in a short summer. We would also like to Capitalize Mr. Sandoval’s words telling us how special this group was, how they worked collaboratively, took risks and evaluated each other. This is a lesson learned in life.
– Sincerely, Maria & Ozzie Vannucci

KIMMY RAJANI
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

The NYFA was a great experience. I cannot tell you how glad I am that I went. I learned so many things: scriptwriting, handling actors, editing, lighting. I realize now how important lighting is. The environment was very comfortable, people were eager to help others, and the teachers went the extra mile to make sure you enjoyed every minute (thanks Allen and Bryan). It’s cool how everyone hung out with each other. How age wasn’t an issue. I love the fact that we got to truly experience L.A. There was always something going on, doors were always being opened. As for my future, I’m still undecided. There were so many things presented to me and I liked all of them, it’s hard to narrow it down…. I will let you know how everything goes. Until then, I just want to say thanks.

BILLY CARRIER
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

I’ve loved film since I was a little kid, and I was a little cocky about how much I know or what I thought I knew! This workshop taught me a lot about the creative choices a director has to make, information that I could apply directly to my own films. The film crew experience was great—but a lot of work! I have a lot more respect for filmmakers now that I understand what happens behind the scenes. It’s really tough! Call me crazy, but I loved it! This workshop showed me that I have the stamina needed to make films, and now I’m confident enough to make more films in the future.

NICHOLAS FIORE
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

I participated in the 3-week program, but looking back I wish I had stayed longer. It was definitely a great and enlightening experience, and I’m certain it will help me in the long run. I am in the process of looking at possible colleges to attend, and I mentioned that I had participated in your program. I was told that having done so demonstrated my interest in film and would be a great help on my resume. Now that I’m back home, I am hard at work on independent movies with friends. I feel that my new knowledge of film as an art form has helped me in bringing a new quality to each movie project I undertake. I feel confident that film making will be a prominent part of my future, and plan on pursuing it to the best of my efforts. I would like to thank everyone at the NYFA for their instruction and overall help.

LUIS ZAVALA
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
DISNEY STUDIOS, FLORIDA

During the month of July of 2002, I was in that world that I’ve always wanted to be in, and I still can’t believe how great the adventure was. It was just like a roller-coaster, only that it was, without a doubt, very intensive. But at the end, you’ve established a decision in your life that you’ll never stop making movies.

FRANK ZINGHINI, FATHER OF ARRIEN
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
DISNEY STUDIOS, FLORIDA

I just wanted to thank you for giving Arrien such a great opportunity at this camp. He came back ten years older, two feet taller, and with a heightened enthusiasm for all things film. It’s great to see…. I can’t even imagine the amount the work you had to put in to make this happen, and I wanted you to know how much I appreciate it. Please extend my thanks to your entire staff.

KAREN TSANG
TEEN MOVIE CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

NYFA was an amazing experience, and I’ve missed it so much since I got back home. I want to thank you so very much for all your help, suggestions, and support throughout our movie-making process. I don’t think I’ve ever had a teacher that made as big of an impact as you did, and it’s a bit ridiculous because the whole course was only a week long. I greatly appreciate all that you taught and did for us – I’ve been blabbing on to my parents and friends about how encouraging and inspiring you are. I never thought I would learn so much from just one week, and now I have many ideas for future projects this year.

Thank you again from the bottom of my heart. I’ll never forget the experience I had in L.A. this summer.

MARY FREE, MOTHER OF MEGAN
3-WEEK TEEN ACTING CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

Dear Staff and Board of Directors of the NYFA,

I picked up Megan yesterday from the three week program and must say that I have never seen her more excited about life. In the last few years our family has experienced it’s share of challenges. The effect on Meg has been compounded by adolescence and a distinct lack of real support and positive direction from her teachers. The professionalism and enthusiasm of your staff has restored her faith in her future and her abilities. I cannot thank you enough for all that you have shown her. Please know that you all have made a difference in this young person’s life.

All the Best,
Sincerely,
Mary Free

JONATHAN GRAY, FATHER OF EMMA
4-WEEK TEEN DIGITAL FILMMAKING
PARIS, FRANCE

Thank you for providing such a fantastic experience for my daughter, Emma. She has enjoyed everything about the program and, in fact, does not even want to come home.

And thanks to you and everyone else at the NYFA Paris for making this such a wonderful experience for Emma.

XICO MEIRELLES, MOTHER OF TATJANA
4-WEEK TEEN FILMMAKING CAMP
FLORENCE, ITALY

In the summer of 2003, we sent our daughter Tatjana Meirelles, on a NYFA 5-week film-making course in Florence (as a prize for her academic achievements) – she loved it !! blissfully exhausting, she said – something like 10 short films in 4 weeks ?

She informed us that this was the best, the most intense film-making experience she had so far, in her short film career – it certainly helped her in the subsequent year at UCT (University of Cape Town), while finishing off her Film & Media degree. So, well done NYFA!

Her new gained skills from the NYFA, in say, Final-Cut Pro, resulted in Tatjana (& her Mac), becoming an after-hours hub for a wide network of student colleagues, professionals & friends, getting their film projects conceived, produced, filmed, edited, screened & reviewed.
As a result, Tatjana has from a very young age, been literally ‘living, eating, talking & sleeping’ film 24 hours/day, using her bedroom as this permanent brain-storming venue for budding local film-makers…
Since receiving this ‘boost’, she has gone from strength to strength – qualifying in her Film & Media degree at UCT with distinction (+ a distinction in Film, her Major)… & subsequently doing well in local film competitions, getting a job as an editor with a well-known Production House, while directing some excellent short documentaries in her free time.

Once again, thanks.

ROSITA LAMA MUVDI
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

I attended NYFA for the 4-week summer program. I am currently studying film at Boston University and got into NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts–I had submitted my NYFA final film. Thank you.

ELAINE PASQUA, MOTHER OF EVAN
1-WEEK TEEN MOVIE CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

My son Evan Cohen attended the one week film workshop that began on July 19. You may remember Evan he was the one who was confused and left the school one day when he was not supposed to. You know … the one who was reminding you of yourself at 14!

I wanted to thank you and your staff for providing Evan with such a positive experience. He learned so many new skills from the program. From writing an interesting plot, to working with new equipment, editing, and appreciating how organized one must be when producing a movie, this program has it all! Most importantly for a 14 year old who has been making movies since he was 8, this workshop heightened his interest in filmmaking. He still wants to pursue this as a career.

I also want to take a moment to compliment Caroline Aragon. Evan had the most post production difficulties with his movie “Spare Change.” Caroline went out of her way right before the screening on Sunday to help Evan correct the problems so it could be ready for the screening. Somehow the music that he dubbed was lost in the computer. After many unsuccessful attempts by Caroline and others to retrieve the song, my husband went across the street and purchased a new soundtrack from “Kill Bill” that could be dubbed in. Caroline came to us after the screening and offered to purchase the new CD from us because she felt bad. Please tell her we appreciated everything that she did for Evan and her sensitivity towards us that Sunday. She was wonderful!

I also want to thank you for taking the time to speak to me after the screening to offer advice towards Evan’s future in movie making. We hope to see you next summer for the four week program and we will not hesitate to highly recommend the New York Film Academy to others.

NICK BATCHELDER
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP

I attended a session during the summer of 2004 which resulted in receiving a few college credits. I still keep in touch with many of my old classmates, and most of them are studying film as well. As for me, I’m currently studying film production at Cal State Northridge, and I’m enjoying it. My old classmates from NYFA are studying film at other universities: NYU, Syracuse, UT, American, Minnesota, and Columbia. I still wear my NYFA T-shirt all the time–it got worn out so much, I had to find another one online!

ASHLEY LAFERRIERE
5-WEEK TEEN DIGITAL FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

I just wanted to say that I had such a wonderful time at NYFA this summer! I made so many new friends, and most I am still in contact with. I’m planning on coming back next summer to do 6-week film… You guys got me hooked on making movies! Thank you so much for helping me have the best summer ever.

ADRES ANTON DIA
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP

I was really excited about going to the workshop two months ago… but I didn’t really know what I was getting into. A month of storyboards, story developing, measuring, editing, and mistake after mistake, was probably just what I needed to know how much I love filmmaking and want to continue with my dream. July 2002 was probably one of the greatest experiences of my life…

JAN CHANDLE, MOTHER OF CARA CHANDLE
4-WEEK TEEN DIGITAL FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

Cara Chandler was a student at the LOS ANGELES digital film making class. She loved the class and is more determined than ever to get into film school. She has just started her senior year at La Canada High School and is busy with cheerleading, drama, and of course, filmmaking…. We recommend the class to other interested high schoolers in our area.

JORDAN MARKS
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
DISNEY STUDIOS, FLORIDA

My name is Jordan Marks and I attended the 4-week film program in Disney Studios, Orlando. I just wanted to let you know what an amazing experience that was. I will never forget my time there… What made the camp such a wonderful experience, was the influence from Robert Pietri, Dan Mackler, and Erik. They really created a fun learning environment and I would recommend that program to anyone, because of those three guys. I just wanted to thank you for creating such an exciting program.

TIMOTHY SHAY
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP

The New York Film Academy was the greatest experience of my life. I have never made so many friends. I love watching films but there’s something about making films that’s far more satisfying than ever watching a film. I was very unsure as to whether or not I would like making films and waited till after before deciding to go to film school or not. But now I know that I will die making films, it is all I want to do now…. NYFA was the best thing that ever happened to me. Thank you.

TONY CAMPOS
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

It was the greatest summer I ever had! The instructors were very honest and direct. I expected my family to like my final film, but I was so surprised that the whole audience seemed to like it! This Fall, I got an internship at a TV station, and I’m going to work as a P.A. in my spare time. Next summer, I want to use everything I learned at the NYFA to make another short film. I’m going to call up people from my class to help me, the people I spent hours with talking about film, who spent nights in the editing room with me. I would recommend this course to anyone who loves film enough to stick with it through long hours and little sleep!

ANA JULFAYAN
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

I’m happy to say the high school workshop was one of the best experiences of my life. One that I will never forget. I learned much more than I imagined. I met so many people that were very fun to be with. This workshop has given me just a little taste of what I want to do for the rest of my life. I am so thankful that such a program existed. The teachers were great!!! The counselors and T.A.s were extremely helpful and respected us to the full extent. It was just an amazing experience for me. I am actually working on a documentary with a student from NYFA…. Thanks to the New York Film Academy I have learned so much and am a step closer to where I want to be. THANKS!!!

SEHERA KHAWAJA
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

If you’re really interested in film, this is a great course to take! The instructors were very helpful! I was nervous about my final film project and went to talk to an instructor about it. He really helped me develop my story ideas so that I felt good about my final film shoot.

MELISSA BATAVIA, MOTHER OF JULIA BATAVIA
4-WEEK TEEN FILM CAMP
LOS ANGELES, CA

Parents usually want to make most, if not all, their child’s dreams come true; but never in MY wildest dreams did I ever expect the caliber of film that Julia learned how to produce in such a short time.

Julia’s three little films blew us away; blew us away and have blown everyone we’ve shown them to away. Whether or not, she follows this path has yet to be seen. However, the confidence she gained in her ability to pitch and storyboard an idea, to produce, direct, shoot and edit – (with or without music, etc.) and… god forbid, actually show offer the film for critique – will remain strong enough to sustain her for some time.

Frankly, I really didn’t know what to expect. After all, it’s camp! But Julia was motivated to take full advantage of the opportunity and with fantastic results!!! More importantly, Julia met kids just like her… film fanatics… nerds who know just as many obscure movie lines as she does; new friends who appreciate all the elements that make a film great… or a dud. She arrived home very very happy and certainly proud of all she accomplished.

Thank you so very much for everything. Best Wishes

BRETT HOPKINS, FATHER OF KACY HOPKINS
1-WEEK TEEN ACTING CAMP
NEW YORK CITY

Hello, my name is Brett A. Hopkins and my daughter Kacy Hopkins attended the Aug 8 to Aug 13th Acting class. Let me tell you she had a wonderful time and learned so much and has been bitten by the acting bug. When we got home she tried out for the lead role in our community theater play. The competition was intense,but she landed the lead role in a play called “Our Town.” She told me that she applied what she learned in the NYFA class to her audition, and it WORKED.

She is currently a college freshman with the major of theater. I would like to thank the NYFA staff for providing a safe learning atmosphere for my daughter Kacy. She was sad when it ended and wants to come back for the extended class. I would like to say HATS OFF to Michael Sandoval for a great job in providing for all of the students especially my daughter Kacy. She told me that she enjoyed every instructor to the fullest. THANKS NYFA!



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