Roehampton University Summer Ball 2013

About the Client

Roehampton University is one of the liveliest campus-based Universities in the UK that specialises in teaching, dance, business, IT, sport and the arts.

The university has plenty of green grounds and lakes; with four campuses in the same location, it has a great sense of community.

The Students’ Union is incredibly active in the enhancement of the student experience through campaigns, sports, societies, activities, welfare and (of course) events.

The Live Event

The Roehampton Summer Ball is one of the biggest Balls in the UK which is no surprise when it is 16hrs long and has attracted acts such as Razorlight,The Streets, The Zutons, Exampleand The Maccabees.

It is easily regarded as a mini-festival. We’ve filmed the event for the last two years and when that time of year came around again we got the call with just 5 words: “You’ve gotta do it again!”, to which we replied, “okay.”

Filming the Live Event

Having filmed the event twice already did pose its challenges; this year’s video had to be original and different to the ones of the past without being a million miles away. The concept was revisited keeping the core inspiration, which was to film the event more like a short film in style.

With that core concept in mind, the presentation was decided. The challenge was then to come up with the content. Yes, there are similar elements to the event each year and it does have a certain structure (beginning, middle and end) so the areas of focus and themes were what we reimagined.

‘The circus’, ‘metamorphoses’, ‘intimacy’ and ‘interaction’ were the key terms to convey and once the tracks were finalised, the pace was also decided. Using 50mm lenses, we achieved a sense of intimacy without being too cramped and shot at 50 frames per second in order to capture those moments of high action in beautiful slow motion.

We tried some new ideas such as “the wall”, where people stood in front of it and did something fun, “the board” which allowed people to describe their year in one word and “the photo booth” where they got to pose for the camera.

These set pieces gave people the opportunity to interact more with the camera, adding a personal touch.

Editing the Event Footage

With 7 hours of footage, the edit was no mere hill to climb, it was a mountain! With the final video being 5 minutes 38 seconds long, you’d better believe that only the best, most relevant, exciting and moving shots made the cut, creating steady crescendos at times with breaks and explosions in others.

We made sure the images told a story. As for the grade. a low-contrast look with hints of purple in the lowlights really captured not only the mood, but the zeitgeist of the time and a real play on colour for the evening.

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