A DIY Musical That Will Remain in Our Hearts - and Online

Posted on Tuesday, April 13, 2021

FTX Productions

Congratulations to the organizers and the cast of this year’s FTX Production’s Time Capsule Musical, released on YouTube on March 19, 2021.

A cast of 15 actor-singers were featured in the first-ever virtual Musical presented by FTX Productions. The “DIY” musical is a medley of songs from various musicals. Each individual member had to perform and film themselves from the safety of their own home. Dispersed all over Canada, working in different time zones, they were able to assemble for their audience an hour filled with joy, dance and singing.

The directors Veronica Van Dalen and Juliana Dapula (both 3Ls) could not envision cancelling the 2021 edition of the musical, despite the pandemic we have all lived through the past year. This meant they were faced with creating a production without having full certainty of what the final product would be. And they did it.

Veronica and Juliana had to rely on the collaboration, professionalism and perfectionism of the cast to rehearse, prepare and shoot their parts. Veronica described “everybody [as] flawless”. This allowed for the creation of a high-level final product. It did make editing a bit arduous. With everyone’s part so good, how can one figure out which parts to cut? To honor everyone’s hard work, the directors extended the musical by about 20 minutes.

To commemorate the release date (aka the premiere night), the cast, crew and friends got together on a Zoom call to watch the screening as a group. Many friends and family popped in to congratulate the crew. About 85 people (virtually) attended. What could have been a bittersweet premiere night turned out to be quite heartwarming.

All cast members smiling on a zoom call

FTX Productions 2021 Cast Members

FTX Productions is a group of uOttawa law students who love to perform, and who seek to bring the Ottawa law community together through songs and dance in its annual musical production. Each year, the proceeds of ticket sales are awarded to a local charity. “Giving back to the community has always been the overarching goal of our work. Fundraising for a local charity makes our hours of rehearsal so rewarding,” said Veronica.

This year’s graduating cohort is the last to have had the chance to be taught by the late Professor Ian Kerr, and his students felt they wanted to commemorate his memory. When FTX Productions asked  their peers to select this year’s charity, they received overwhelming submissions to support the Ian Kerr Memorial Fund.  They were able to raise $1,000 the first weekend following the release and an anonymous donor graciously offered to match all the donations made.

Should you wish to contribute, you may do so on the The Ian R. Kerr Memorial Fund page.

A few comments from the cast:

“I can say that although I felt a little robbed because we couldn't have an in-person musical this year, I am definitely ending law school on a high note. I guess one benefit of this virtual platform is that we will get to re-live this moment over and over. (I've already re-watched it).” - Juliana Dapula (Co-Producer, Co-Director & Screen writer 2021).

 

“Going to law school means devoting your time to studying the law. But that doesn’t mean that law students don’t have other passions and talents. For me, the musical allowed me to express my creative talents in a way I hadn’t been able to since beginning law school. I’m happy with the career path I’ve chosen, but I also have a background in music, singing, theatre, and creative writing that often goes unused. With the musical, I got to use my creative background again, and during a pandemic no less. Best of all, it worked around my class schedule and went to a good cause. I also made new friends during a time when it was impossible to meet people. The online format of the musical even yielded the necessity for even more creative skills than in normal years. Now, in addition to musicians, singers, dancers, actors, and stage crew, we needed scriptwriters and video and music editors. The final product is something that will last forever and that I will always be proud of. I can’t wait to do it all again next year in whatever format we can.” - Samantha Savage

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About Dr. Ian R. Kerr

A founding member of the University of Ottawa Centre for Law, Technology and Society, Ian joined the Faculty of Law, Common Law Section in 2000 and was named as the Canada Research Chair in Ethics, Law and Technology in 2001. Ian identified the need to examine the legal and ethical implications of technology years before these issues emerged as leading societal concerns. His towering career spanned a myriad of law and policy challenges including robots and the law, artificial intelligence, privacy, surveillance, security, digital rights management, algorithms, electronic contracting, human rights, and human enhancement. As always, he brought a unique, multi-disciplinary perspective, drawing on his four-way appointment in Law, Medicine, Philosophy, and Information Studies.

The Ian R. Kerr Memorial Fund

In establishing the Ian R. Kerr Memorial Fund, his friends and colleagues plan to support scholarships, fellowships, activities and initiatives honouring the legacy of Dr. Ian R. Kerr in the fields of technology law, ethics and policy.

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