By Tanner Adomaitis, Staff Writer
Originally Published October 3, 2023
With the help of the Audio-Visual Club (or AV) Club, the lights and cameras of student projects have been put into action. Reilly McKay, junior communication major and President of the AV Club, aims for the club to be a place for content creators where they “can make and watch movies.”
The club offers resources and support for creators to turn their ideas to film, and McKay said there are plenty in the making from various student creators, including himself. These projects include two sci-fi horror films, a silent drama film, and even an auto-biographical short film. Every creator has their own goal with their projects, and the club aims to help them achieve those goals.
“The goal is just for everyone to get experience. Because the best way to get better at film making is to just make projects,” McKay said. “Whenever you start out, you’re not expected to be good – and that’s not to discourage people – but it’s a fun process to be able to go, ‘okay I learned this didn’t work from my last project so let’s try something new in my next one.’”
While not directly associated with the AV Club, a project making waves is The Monastery, led by Adam Koscielicki, junior sports media major. The Monastery is an ongoing comedy series, created in October of 2022, with filming beginning in January of 2023. It follows a group of monks, mainly Father Howard, played by McKay.
“I am also trying to show people that monks are not the stereotypical stoic beings that some people think they are. I want to show people that they are fun, and that they're just regular guys,” Koscielicki said.
Koscielicki’s original script underwent some changes as filming began, with it “being changed like 7 or 8 times,” but the idea has remained unchanged. While filming is on pause for now, fans of the series can expect more in the future.
Laura Wargo, senior public history major, plays a nun in The Monastery. Wargo has acted in plays before and does stand-up comedy in her free time, but The Monastery is her first series.
“I’ve always enjoyed acting. Adam reached out via the AV Club, and it sounded like a great opportunity. Because I do stand-up comedy in my free time, it seemed like the perfect chance to put myself out there more,” Wargo said. “When you’re on stage, there’s really no room for error, especially with a group of people. But filming, I find it a lot more fun because there is a lot more [flexibility].”
The Monastery features a variety of monks and nuns with unique personalities. Wargo plays a “very stern” nun, however she can be “a little bit sneaky.” McKay’s character, Father Howard, is the President of the school, and the show’s main character.
“He’s clueless, goofy, over-dramatic but also just cares a lot about people in a loving, Golden Retriever type of way,” McKay said.
Between the student projects associated with classes, with the AV Club, or just personal projects, there is a lot for fans of film to look forward to from student content creators.