Standing Ovation Awards

For two years in a row, we continued our partnership with the DC Education Fund to highlight some of DC Public Schools’ incredible programs and teachers. Producing a series of videos for the annual Standing Ovation awards show, we tried something different — capturing that OMG surprise moment on camera. The results may move you.

Give Them A Hand!

To help emphasize DC Public School’s commitment to teaching excellence, the DC Ed Fund created the Standing Ovation Awards program to give the school system something to rally behind (and donors something to invest in). Producing a video for each award meant a lean approach. Our time with these teachers, students and staff would be limited, so we thought of a hook to pack as much emotion into these half-day shoots. We convinced DCPS to allow us (and local press) to stage and capture the in-person “surprise!” moment. This allowed for each video to have a moving and somewhat unpredictable story arc based on the individual reactions.

Surprised Teacher
Students with a Great Surprise

Excellence in Scheduling

After the honorees were selected, Ellyn organized a tight timeline to shoot at schools across the city. DC Ed Fund and DCPS helped arrange for the “ambush,” calling for assemblies and even special appearances by the Chancellor and Mayor. Favata and Phil competed with sizable local news crews to get the close-up shots. As the hysteria settled, we directed honorees for b-roll coverage — to offer some perspective on their incredible contributions and inform the community about these worthwhile and often one-of-a-kind programs and personalities.

A Red Carpet Rollout

Favata and Rob cut together each video, looking to capture the individual personalities of the honorees, as well as the supporting staff and students. Dan created an elegant awards treatment to display the award titles and reinforce a filmic quality. The videos debuted at the new Anthem theater in town, reinforcing the school system's committment to rockstar talent in the nation's fastest-improving urban school disctrict.

Videos Debut at Kennedy Center