Locust Valley Earns Top Awards at Film Festival

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Locust Valley High School students won six awards at the school’s 10th annual Film Festival. The Locust Valley student films took first place in three categories including documentary, comedy and music video, and earned third place in the drama, public service announcement and music video categories.

The films were judged by WABC-TV film critic Sandy Kenyon, who said this year’s festival participants produced some of the best films he has seen in his five years as a judge. “I noticed some great progress,” Mr. Kenyon said. “This year, there was a lot of writing what you know, and it was thrilling to watch.” 

Students from 12 high schools across Long Island attended the Film Festival, sending in 136 films for the first round of judging by professors at NYIT. The final 52 films were screened during the festival, and the winners chosen by Mr. Kenyon. Each of the finalists received a trophy, and each of the winning filmmakers was awarded a scholarship to NYIT for $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place and $250 for third place in each category. 

Locust Valley High School film teacher Bruce Campbell organized the festival and said the Locust Valley students did an outstanding job. “I am very proud of our film students. They have once again demonstrated outstanding creativity and artistic ability. I am delighted that they are being rewarded for all of their hard work.”

Working with Mr. Campbell was the Locust Valley High School Parents’ Council. This volunteer group, led by Emily Johnson and Susan Ferrari, coordinated lunch for the participants, organized Monday Night at the Movies, ordered trophies, decorations and more. “I could not have done this without the tremendous help of the parents,” Mr. Campbell said.

The winner for first place in drama, “A Veteran’s Story,” is a film that was created in collaboration with the Locust Valley Rotary Club. Rotarian Katherine Gibson spearheaded the project to document the stories of local veterans. Locust Valley film students have been interviewing these veterans and the final films will be accepted into the Library of Congress.

The Locust Valley Film Festival partnered with the Long Island International Film Festival, and Nassau County Film Commissioner Debra Markowitz presented the Audience Choice Award to the winning filmmakers from Baldwin High School. Their film will be shown at the Long Island International Film Festival this July.

Congratulations to the following Locust Valley students:

First Place, Documentary: “A Veteran’s Story”  

Charlie Picoli, James Schieferstein and David Vissichelli

First Place, Comedy: “The Date”

Reed Rudowsky and Shanaz Sanjana

First Place, Music Video: “Monster”

T.J. Ferrari

Third Place, Drama: “Down But Not Out“  

Zoey Lee, Julian Pagliaccio and Brian Reidy 

Third Place, Public Service Announcement: “Car Accident”

Nicole Yonkers

Third Place, Music Video: “Say Something”

Will Campanella