Sunday, April 13, 2014

Hall of Fame

On my third trip out to the Full Sail back lot I found that the outdoor stage had been broken down because of the threat of rain. An awards ceremony was going on inside Full Sail Live and I tried to get in, but security guards refused entrance.

I walked back to a jumbo tron where students were catching all the action. I decided to sit under a huge umbrella and I'm glad I did, because half way into the sketch, it began to pour. The students ran for cover, joining me under the umbrella.

Some of the students must have not realized I was a teacher because they gossiped about how the think teachers don't give a damn because they are just biding their time until they land a job in the movie industry again.

The founder of Full Sail,  Jon Phelps, got on stage and he loomed large and bright on the Jumbo tron. I've never met the man. Staff joked about which color Maserati sports car he might drive to the ceremony. He has done very well for himself, yet teachers at Full Sail struggle to make ends meet. The school focuses it's resources on State of the art technology and tons of marketing while the instructors in the trenches seem overlooked.

Awards were given to Kim Albert, Tom BoydDemacio Castellon, Leon Hopkins, Larry Katz,  and Juan Peralta. Unlike the Academy Awards there was no cut off cue when an award recipient went on too long. The common thread among the recipients speeches was that persistence and determination do eventually pay off. This is a lesson that is only learned outside the classroom in the everyday struggle to build a career.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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