Screen and Film School Birmingham celebrate their 22/23 Induction Day
To finish our round-up of Screen and Film School’s successful induction events, we’re moving to the Midlands and to Screen and Film School Birmingham, where our second ever first-year students were welcomed towards the end of September. Induction week in Brum was jam-packed with talks, tours, parties and introducing our young filmmakers to the rich cinematic history the second city has to offer.
Pancakes and breakfast baps were the welcoming treat as the freshers arrived at our Digbeth campus, and the queue stretched all the way around the corner of the Film School, such is the large influx of budding filmmakers this year. There is no better way to introduce yourself to a fellow student, or to relax into a brand-new environment than over a hearty breakfast, and that’s exactly what our freshers did on their opening morning.
Once everyone was fuelled and familiar with their surroundings, students were introduced to the wealth of expert lecturers who will guide them through their studies. Everyone at the Film School was delighted to welcome director Theo James Krekis, videographer Seb Hakim and writer/director Josh Rai, joining our existing expert lecturers as staff members. By the end of the first day, all of the new students had had one-to-ones with a Film School lecturer. These vital introductions help to put any first day nerves at ease through the sharing of information and guidance.
The following day, the eventfulness went up a notch or two when everyone headed over to the NEC for the Bear Grylls Experience, an action-adventure day of Royal Marines-inspired assault and obstacle courses. This proved to be the perfect way of getting students and staff alike moving and bonding over various activities such as archery, axe throwing, high ropes, scramble nets, climbing and much more. It was a joy to see the interaction between our freshers, even if many were a little sore for the walking tour the next day…
The highlight of the walking tour was a trip to one of Birmingham’s real hidden gems – the Everyman Cinema – a stylish Art Deco screening house situated in the thriving center of the city. Here, the students had a further chance to mingle, whilst listening to three specialist industry speakers, all of which are from or based in the area. These included director Michael Baig Clifford, who has made dramas and documentaries for every UK television network and has worked with the likes of Ray Winstone and Sheridan Smith, as well as Bhulla Beghal, a local award-winning filmmaker who gave some great advice on being a freelancer in the current filmmaking climate, and finally Matt Ford who gave some invaluable insights into how to get started in the industry and discussing his past projects that have helped disadvantaged children from Birmingham gain experience in filmmaking.
Whilst at the Everyman, College Principal David Thompson gave a welcome speech which discussed all of the diverse modules, practical experiences and expert guidance the students can expect to receive over the next three years. Theo James Krekis also showed his stunning short film, Pram Snatcher, which went down a storm and undoubtedly inspired everyone as to the level of short films they can aspire to produce during their studies.
Later that day, things went from the sublime to the ridiculous as everyone marched over to Roller Jam, a state-of-the-art roller disco venue which is just around the corner from the school in one of Digbeth’s many cavernous warehouse spaces. Kudos to our brave crop of freshers for getting into the spirit of it, many of whom had never pulled on a pair of skates before and spent the first part of the evening face-planting the rink. Thankfully, nobody was hurt, everyone got the hang of it, and we expect to see plenty of roller-skating film content in the coming years!
As the week drew to a close, the entire group of first year students went on a tour of various cinematic landmarks around Birmingham. We ventured into the BBC offices in the Mailbox building, where BBC Three is based, and went into Grand Central station where Tom Cruise recently filmed Mission: Impossible 7, which one of our students was fortunate enough to have worked on. We went to the Electric Cinema, Birmingham’s oldest cinema, and finished up at the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery for ‘Wonderland,’ an exhibition on the past, present and future of Birmingham filmmaking and cinema.
With that, the busy week was over for our freshers. Introductions, activities and events left them all needing some much-needed rest and recuperation before the hard work began in the classrooms and studios. Looking back now, here is what some of our new students had to say about their opening weeks at Screen and Film School Birmingham:
“The main reason why I liked fresher’s week so much was because it allowed me to fulfil my adventurous spirit, there was so much to do. Hanging out and interacting with my fellow creatives in and out of the curriculum was pretty awesome.”- Chris Faur
“Meeting everyone at fresher’s was great. The talks were really good, very insightful. Theo’s film, Pram Snatcher, was amazing; the cinematography, the script, the actors. A really nice week.” – Kian Smith
“Fresher’s week was really good! The atmosphere was great. It made coming in easier, as you already know a lot of people and you can have a chat between classes. The roller rink was a lot of fun, despite my multiple near-death experiences.” – Connor Reynolds
“Freshers was absolutely brilliant, making loads of new mates. The talks were inspirational, I made some notes for my future. It was amazing.” – Gavin Parker
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