MAMA’s 11th Annual Film Festival

April 16, 2021

Good afternoon. This note is intended to provide some basic information about the MAMA program, to serve as an announcement with regard to this year’s film festival, and to invite you to participate by making a film of your own.

The Moravian Academy Media Arts (MAMA) program was created for the purpose of providing opportunities to our students and the overall community for creative expression through film and other media arts.

Over the past ten years, we've created and shared our film projects typically in the form of divisional assemblies. This year, with the coronavirus pandemic, things have looked quite different: we have not been able to create videos in our filmmaking electives as we have in the past, so we’re going to need to rely heavily on submissions from classes and cohorts inside of school and students and families outside of school. We’re not sure what we’ll get, but we’re hoping we’ll have enough content to share and enjoy together in some form.

This is your invitation! Please consider creating a short video-based project and sharing it with us. For submission guidelines and rules, please see the submission form.

MAMA Submission Form
Below you will find a list of ideas for making a short film. You may choose to do one of these, but you should surely feel free to think outside the box. You will also find some tips for making a good short film. Finally, you will find a link to our Vimeo showcase featuring some of our films from the past. This showcase is not an exhaustive list of everything that we've done, but it should give you a taste of some of the works that have been produced and shared over the years. You should feel free to use the films as examples of what can be done, but again, feel free to think outside the box.


  • The Trailer Challenge – Make a trailer using any iMovie trailer template

  • The Commercial/Mockumercial Challenge – Make a TV commercial or a parody of a TV commercial

  • The Music Video/Music Video Parody Challenge – Make a music video or parody of a music video

  • The Adaptation Challenge – Make a trailer or short film version of any book you’ve read in school this year

  • The Documentary Challenge – Make a short documentary-style film

  • The Animation Challenge – Make a stop-motion or animated film

  • The Original Film Challenge – Make a short (feature-style) film

Tips for making a good short film:

1. Write a sample script with a streamlined plot and a minimum number of characters. You will run out of time and be unable to flesh out complex story arcs or large casts of characters.

2. Consider what locations, props, costumes, and other basic production needs you have available or can easily obtain, writing your script with this in mind. A story set in a modern-day American suburb will have greater verisimilitude than an 18th-century Chinese epic.

3. Keep your pacing lively with sharp editing and a good mix of shots, even five-minute films can seem like an eternity with too slow of a tempo.

4. Don’t forget about the sound. Audio can make or break the audience’s experience of your film. Imagery is important, but inaudible dialogue or inattention to your audio mix can wreck an otherwise great film. A well-designed soundscape can greatly enhance even mediocre cinematography.

5. Look at other short films on Youtube, Vimeo, Tik Tok, and other platforms!!! You will get a sense of what works and what doesn’t.

View Vimeo Showcase

The deadline for any or all submissions (SEE submission form above) for MAMA’s Film Fest will be May 7th, 2021. Please contact the point person at your respective division or campus for more information.

For questions, please contact:

Sara Polefka (Moravian Academy Lower School)

Bud Brennan (Moravian Academy Middle School)

Lindsay Woodruff (Moravian Academy Upper School)

Veronica Bocian (Swain School)


What we're curious about