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Southeastern films win at international film festival

Contact: Christina Chapple


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Alan Marsh, Stephen Suber and Martie Fellom

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WINNING FILMMAKERS – “Firefly Club,” a short subject art film by, from left, author/director Alan Marsh, composer Stephen Suber, and producer/co-director Martie Fellom, all members of the Southeastern Louisiana University faculty, won two gold awards at the 2007 Worldfest Houston International Film Festival.

     HAMMOND – Two short subject films created by Southeastern Louisiana University faculty and students were award winners at the Worldfest Houston International Film Festival.

     “Firefly Club,” which debuted as the opening event for the 2006 season of Southeastern’s arts festival Fanfare and has aired on the Southeastern Channel, won the gold awards in the Short Subject Family/Children and Short Subject Experimental Drama.

     The 23-minute film was written and directed by English instructor Alan Marsh and produced and co-directed by Martie Fellom, professor of music and dramatic arts, with original music by Stephen Suber, composer-in-residence and professor of music.

     Marsh's documentary, “Presence Patrol,” also was awarded a bronze in the Short Subject Documentary category.

     The films were selected from among 4,500 entries from 37 countries judged in the annual festival, held April 20-29.

     “Presence Patrol,” which Marsh describes as a “personal travelogue” of his experience documenting fellow Louisiana Army National Guard members’ activities in Iraq in spring 2005, was also recently screened at the University of New Orleans’ film festival earlier this month. Marsh was one of three members of the guard’s 102nd Public Affairs Detachment deployed to Iraq to capture and record the 256th Brigade Combat Team participation in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

     “Firefly Club” is the fourth award-winning film created by Marsh and Fellom, who also collaborated on “Wish,” “Wild Kingdom,” and “An Act of Bravery.”

     The film’s production work was done by Somnium Studios, which was formed by three students, Chris Guagliardo and Austen Ledford of Southeastern and Matt Seamster of LSU. The trio was guided by Southeastern Channel staffers Claude Levet, Steve Kleyle and Steve Zaffuto and assisted by interns Stephanie Delcambre and Erin McCalip.

     “The Firefly Club,” Marsh said, is a very visual art film of motifs and symbols that centers dramatically around three young girls lost at night in the woods while catching fireflies. “It’s about faith and the connectiveness of life,” he said.

     “A part of the human experience is a feeling or sense of isolation that can occur when a person is surrounded by other people, even their own families,” Marsh said. “Through our protagonist, Olivia, who is one of the three girls, I tried to show that there are connections all around us, we just need to make the effort to reach out. And, yes, nature is part of that connection.”

     Suber, who has scored other Marsh-Fellom films, said he was inspired by “the amazing cinematography” and “stunningly beautiful images” in “Firefly Club.”  

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