Cindy Stillwell is a film artist whose films have screened at venues worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Sundance Film Festival, DOK Leipzig and the International Film Festival of Rotterdam. In addition her short films are distributed in collections from Slamdance Film Festival, Full Frame Film Festival, the Journal of Short Film, and FUTURE SHORTS, in the U.K. She has been awarded residencies at MacDowell, the Ucross Foundation and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation. Stillwell received her MFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. She currently lives in Bozeman, Montana, where she teaches film production and mentors graduate students in the MFA program in Science and Natural History Filmmaking as part of the School of Film and Photography at Montana State University. More information and short films can be found at www.hybridmediafilms.com
Cindy says: “This project has been in the works for many years with many people really excited by it. I am proud to be able to lead a team that will bring this film to audiences all over Montana and beyond.”
Tom Watson, Associate Professor, School of Film and Photography,Montana State University –Bozeman, is the resident scene designer and lighting designer for Montana Shakespeare in the Parks. He has designed and directed for Montana Theatre Works in Bozeman and has been an actor, director, scene designer, lighting designer, and technical director at various theaters across the country including the Arrowrock Lyceum Theatre, Nebraska Repertory Theatre, Idaho Repertory Theatre, Champlain Shakespeare Festival, Country Dinner Playhouse, and Boulder Dinner Theatre. Originally from the Denver area, Tom received his BFA in Theatre at the University of Idaho and his MFA in Design and Theatre Technology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In March of 2013 he directed The Einstein Project in the Black Box Theatre on the campus of MSU.
Tom says: “I have worked with Montana Shakespeare in the Parks Theatre company for sixteen years. I started a documentary project about the company eleven years ago and I am ready to finish what I started. Its an amazing company, and I have long wanted to tell this story and bring it to the people who love it like I do!”
Aaron Pruitt is the Associate General Manager of KUSM-TV & Director of Content for MontanaPBS. Pruitt provides editorial leadership, reviewing thousands of hours of programming from national and local sources. He serves as executive producer for the station’s news-public affair series, Montana Focus, and the music performance program, 11th & Grant with Eric Funk and a variety of documentaries, like the award-winning and popular Class C: The Only Game in Town. As Executive Producer Pruitt has distributed many programs to PBS, collaborating with independent filmmakers on films like Wolves in Paradise(PBS PLUS), Before There Were Parks: Yellowstone and Glacier Through Native Eyes(PBS NPS), Fort Peck Dam(PBS PLUS) and two PBS’ INDEPDENT LENS programs, Butte America and Indian Relay(fall 2013). With nearly 19 years’ experience, Pruitt intimately understands the PTV audience, the educational mission of public television, as well as the editorial and technical processes for successfully bringing a project through the PTV system.
For Bard in the Backcountry, Chris is acting as co-executive producer for KUSM Montana PBS.
“I like being part of the producing team because I believe in this story – the juxtaposition of Shakespeare and the Montana landscape, of actors and their audience, and those behind the scenes is the essence of Montana…it does take a village!”
Theo Lipfert POST PRODUCTION SUPERVISOR
Theo Lipfert, Associate Professor in the School of Film and Photography at Montana State University, Bozeman, is a filmmaker who is exploring the intersection between visual media and sound. He earned an MFA in Painting at Hunter College in New York City and exhibited paintings and prints widely in North America and Germany before devoting his creative energies to film, video, sound, and teaching. His documentary, narrative, and experimental films have been shown widely at film festivals and broadcast on television. Lipfert was a Fulbright scholar on the African island nation of Mauritius during the 2011-12 academic year. There he taught digital media production and completed a documentary film entitled “Invasion of the Giant Tortoises” about efforts to introduce non-native tortoises to the Mauritian ecosystem. For BARD IN THE BACKCOUNTRY Theo is acting as Post Production Supervisor. He will also be seen with his 5D camera, Ikonskop camera and 702 field recorder throughout the summer.
“I love the idea of a modern traveling troupe of actors going from town to town across Montana and the Rocky Mountain West. It almost seems like something from the days of the stagecoach. I give a lot of credit to these young actors who will be building the stage every night, performing, then packing everything up and moving on. It seems like incredibly hard work, but also rewarding. I know the communities look forward to Shakespeare in the Parks every year, and this seems like a tremendously valuable experience for everyone involved!”
Brandon Watson is a graduate of Montana State University’s School of Film and Photography. He has served as a director of photography on commercials and independent films throughout the region. He has also worked as a lighting technician for national campaigns such as Ram Trucks, Bogs Footwear, Oracle, Nutrimax, and Vans shoes. Brandon has been attending Montana Shakespeare in the Parks performances since he was six years old and has been a scenic carpenter for the theater company since high school in Belgrade, MT. This is his first feature documentary project and he is excited to help document this unique traveling Shakespeare company.
Jacob Gehnert SOUND RECORDIST
Jacob Gehnert is currently an undergraduate film student at Montana State University. His area of study is centered on mixing, recording, and editing sound. He is also a musician who plays several instruments and works as a DJ at the much loved MSU college radio station, KGLT. He is excited to be a part of this film.
Keith Jacoby gets to be a Broadcast Operations Specialist II at MontanaPBS in Bozeman, MT. He has a bachelor’s degree in Media & Theater Arts from MSU Bozeman, focusing on production and post-sound recording. He has helped record audio on many projects, from Frontline’s “Big Sky, Big Money” to web shorts to MMA (mixed martial arts) fights.
Keith says: “Everywhere we go people are passionate about Montana “Shakes.” It’s great working on a project where people are excited to help bring “Shakes” to life.”
Kyle Moriarty is a recent graduate of the film program at Montana State University. His credits include promotional teasers and trailers for various nonfiction projects, as well as other short format works. This is his first full length documentary and Kyle looks forward to bringing his organic, straightforward editing style to the project.
Kyle Says: “Its all about the characters. Getting to know to know your subjects through post production is always a weird a thing. But I know that these girls and guys and going to make for a badass story.”
Laurence is originally from the sunny shores of Charleston, South Carolina. Always intrigued with the natural world, she obtained her Bachelors of Science from Clemson University in Conservation Biology. Her love for wildlife brought her all the way to Montana State University where she is pursuing a MFA in Science and Natural History Filmmaking. Laurence has produced films for the USGS and Southern Environmental Law Center. In her free time you can find her rock climbing, kayaking or baking up a storm.
Ian’s career started as a guitar player / songwriter recording and touring from a young age. He has been composing, performing, recording and producing music for over 30 years and was the driving force within numerous bands, such as “Bonham”, who went Gold with their debut album. He has also performed with many artists, including Robert Plant’s Honeydrippers, Paul Rodgers & Company and Sarah Brightman to name a few.
Always heavily involved in the writing, creation and production process Ian progressed into Production, Film & TV music composition and Sound Design. Ian has scored “West of Thunder” a feature, which has won numerous awards on the film festival circuit, “Sunset Edge” another feature Film “The Fence” and “Drone” both short films. As well as commercial work and many TV shows for PBS including “Wayne Dyer” to recently working on the much-acclaimed British TV Series “Doc Martin” and “Poirot”. Ian also spent 5 years as a consultant for Bose Corporation, writing and producing many 5.1 / 7.1 surround sound projects.