When Armadale film maker Philippe Charluet attended a performance of the Sydney Dance Company 25 years ago, it was the first time he had ever seen contemporary dance.
Enraptured by the performance, Philippe went backstage to praise choreographer Graeme Murphy, asking him if he could film his dance performance.
That was the beginning of a relationship that has continued through the years, and now, a 90-minute DVD compilation of eight different dance works by the company over the past decade has just won First Place Gold Camera Award at the 2007 US International Film & Video Festival.
' Sydney Dance Company On Stage ', was produced and directed by Philippe using multi cameras and the DVD was competing against many entries from 24 countries around the world.
For Philippe, who is also a teacher in the Diploma of Screen program at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT), the award is 'great and exciting' and an accolade for all the artists involved in the production.
'To win an overseas award is good as it was just one DVD out of hundreds and was judged on its own merits without anyone knowing anything about us or the Sydney Dance Company,' Philippe said.
'It's also about reaffirming our culture in Australia, and to know that you're good at what you do is rewarding.'
Philippe added that he was surprised to win the award as there was often a reluctance in Australia to acknowledge our culture as worthwhile and good.
'At times, we seem to have a chip on our shoulder about saying we are good and this award is really about affirming our artistic achievements.'
Originally from France, Philippe has lived in Australia for more than 25 years and graduated from the Australian, Film, Television and Radio School in Sydney. He has worked as producer/ writer/director on a number of projects for both ABC-TV and SBS-TV and also loves teaching.
'To engage with a new generation of aspiring TV program makers at NMIT is very exciting and I enjoy being able to pass on my knowledge and skills about program making,' Philippe said.
'The teaching complements my film-making as it gets me to reflect my own practice and why and how I do things the way I do.'
Forming his own film company in 1995 called Stella Motion Pictures, Philippe has a basic motto that he applies to all his creative ventures on video - Emotion, Humanity, Simplicity.
'Good programs are about emotion and dealing with it. They're also about people and their humanity and keeping stories simple is how you succeed.'
He added capturing dance on video was a complex production when translating what the choreographer had created on stage artistically and bringing that to life for the small screen.
'The filming needs to capture a good sense of drama and narrative inherent to the work with a strong visual impact that celebrates dance to make it fascinating and enlivening.'
Interview / Photo Opportunity
Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener, on (03) 92691579, 0413 483 182 or firstname.lastname@example.org
NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) - Situated on seven campuses and six training centres throughout Melbourne's north, NMIT delivers vocational training, higher education and lifelong learning capabilities for a global workforce. NMIT forges partnerships with community, industry and government to produce practical, solution orientated graduates capable of making meaningful contributions to their chosen field of endeavour.
Interview / Photo Opportunity
Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener.