Preliminary Questions: Multimedia Project

I plan to follow OFFICIAL, a hip-hop dance crew comprised primarily of Asian-American students. The art of dance is very visual and, therefore, will provide excellent photographic and video footage. Landscapes would likely include a dance practice studio and a final performance area.

Many dance studios have wooden floors and flat walls, so interview spaces might provide unwanted echos if I were to interview performers in the dance studio itself. However, sources would be unable to speak while dancing, so I could easily talk with them before or after a practice or performance. Background music, the sound of feet hitting a hard floor and any clapping or choreography that produces sound would add to the soundtrack of a multimedia presentation. Instructions by choreographers or any vocal sounds made by performers would also be good to add.

I’ve contacted OFFICIAL’s president, Tessa Heung, so I will use her as a source and ask her for other contacts and possible sources. She has given me her email as well as a verbal commitment — she said her group has participated in projects like this in previous years and would be willing to work with me.

My schedule could serve as an obstacle for this project. I work Sunday and Monday nights and have Multimedia lab classes Tuesday and Thursday nights, so I will have to look at their schedule and plan well in advance when I can attend practices and special events. When doing this, I must also keep due dates for each component of the project in mind. Another obstacle could stem from people’s unwillingness to speak with me. I experienced this more in Journalism 2100 (News Reporting) with people from Columbia who have been interviewed frequently, but some students do not like speaking with the press or being photographed for an article or multimedia project, even if the project will not be published. I will have to work to find people who are willing to be interviewed and make sure they are qualified to give me good information.

Since my project will be a feature, my beginning questions will focus on the organization itself: When and why was this dance team founded? What does it offer that existing dance teams didn’t? Where does the team perform? What genres of music and types of dance does this dance team incorporate into its choreography?

I then plan to choose a few dancers with whom to speak, and perhaps to profile. I will ask them about their former dance experience, why they joined OFFICIAL and what they’ve gotten out of the experience.

Though I was never a dancer, I was heavily involved in the performing arts in high school and still enjoy them today. Since I don’t know a lot about dance, covering a dance team was of interest because I could both learn more about dance and enjoy the performing arts. There are lots of different dance groups at MU, but this one has a cultural focus, which greatly interested me.

I wish to communicate a clear description of OFFICIAL and its unique facets from other dance groups on campus. I also wish to capture dancers’ passions and convey those to viewers.

MU students, especially those interested in the performing arts, are my target audience. I will reach them through audio (both interview clips and ambient sound), video footage of practices and performances and still photography.

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