Dig Baton Rouge

NOVAC Music Video Production Project

By Hannah Womack

We know all you local musicians are dying to make a music video and put yourselves out there. Well, NOVAC is here to help Baton Rouge and New Orleans bands with that. WWOZ, The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation and the Arts Council of Baton Rouge are offering to make free music video content the way you want it.

This is a recurring project that has helped musical groups increase their fame. Last year, NOVAC produced three videos for Meschiya Lake & The Little Big Horns, Feathermeal and Cha Wa, which premiered on the big screen at Sync Up Cinema 2015. This year, NOVAC has expanded to the Capital City and the videos will again be screened at Sync Up Cinema, which occurs at Jazz Fest in New Orleans, and also at The Baton Rouge Blues Festival.

From now through April, three local filmmakers will each take on a group and guide them through the production process of a real, professional-quality music video. This class is not just for bands — anyone can register, and is beneficial for students interested in filmmaking. This is a way for students to interact with musicians and get their feet wet. Students do have to pay a fee to take the class, but it is worth it. Think of what an amazing videographer you will be when it is over. And you will have helped a local band get from nowhere to somewhere.

“The idea is pretty simple—anyone in Baton Rouge or New Orleans interested in filmmaking and creating a music video should sign up,” said Darcy McKinnon, executive director of NOVAC. McKinnon said the fee for a student is relatively low for the amount of time and experience the students will receive. Classes are flexible with dates and times January through April with four to five sessions over those few months.

According to McKinnon, producing a music video through NOVAC is better for bands because they get a free music video without the burden of coordinating it.

“The NOVAC production teams will be led by experienced producers and crew, who have backgrounds in music video production. The students in the class will provide extra support, production assistance and have some creative input, but the end product will be a professional music video,” said McKinnon.

In addition to the exposure of having their videos screen at Sync Up Cinema and the Blues Festival, the bands will have complete access to use the music video for their own purposes.

“Both Cha Wa and Meschiya Lake, last year participants, have the video content on their social media, websites and use it to book gigs for their bands,” said McKinnon. “We think of music videos these days as business cards that lead to bookings, audience building and other opportunities, so we look forward to providing that content to them for free.”

All bands interested in participating should email jillian@novacvideo.org. Students can register at novacvideo.org.

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