TBU Productions Brings Schenectady Together Around the Production of FastLife
On one occasion, a Schenectady High School student, Stefone Gallman, wrote a song entitled “Fast Life.” Sprauve suggested creating a cinematic music video with an accompanying story line. As the process unfolded, students kept writing additional scenes and dialogue. When Sprauve pointed out that the inclusion of all of their ideas would be overwhelming as a music video, the students declared “Just make it into a movie!” This shifted the focus of the project drastically, greatly expanding the amount of time and dedication required far beyond any project they had taken on previously. Sprauve drew from the support of his mentors, SHS faculty, local businesses, hospitals and even the Schenectady Police Department in order to make the vision of “Fast Life” into a reality. Sprauve proudly proclaims that “Fast Life” is a collaborative effort between TBU Productions and the community. Not only has it allowed his students to display their acting and writing abilities, it has also served as a tool for healing. Students who were previously considered “troubled” have discovered a passion and a purpose. The positive impact of this program has been noticed by their parents and teachers, and is reflected in their grades, attendance records, and plans for future endeavors.
Screenings, Recognitions, and Awards
In September 2013 Fast Life was screened at Williamsburg International Film Festival in Brooklyn, NY
In July, 2013 Fast Life was screened at MCLA Liberal Arts College, followed by a discussion with the Director.
In 2013 Fast Life was screened at Schenectady Community College, honoring Director Prince Sprauve who was a student at the College
Fast Life has been shown on an ongoing basis to students in the Liberty Partnership program, a program that aims to address high dropout rates in urban schools
In 2014 Director Prince Sprauve was awarded a formal recognition from the Schenectady Mayor and City Council
Director Prince Sprauve was invited to join the Millennium Council, a group of young leaders tasked with identifying challenges and presenting solutions in Schenectady, NY
TBU Productions was invited to join the Schenectady Coalition for a Healthy Community
The City Mission has identified Fast Life as a powerful training tool for their providers as part of the Bridges over Poverty Initiative, and uses the film to train their staff
In 2014 Director Prince Sprauve was recognized by the Human Rights Commission for his extraordinary commitment to the community at their annual awards breakfast.
Fast Life, the film, 2012: “In every city, in every high school, every child is challenged to make a choice – walk the straight and narrow path, which can seem like a slow death, or follow the crowded highway of a Fast Life.”
“Fast Life” is the first full-length feature film produced by TBU Productions. The project began in 2010 and debuted at Proctor’s Theatre in Schenectady on April 25, 2013. Individuals, businesses, and organizations throughout Schenectady made the production possible through donations of time, goods, and services. In particular, Director Prince Sprauve volunteered hundreds of hours working with the students and producing the film. The plot depicts the circumstances that attract teens to a life of violent crime, from the perspective of the students themselves. “Fast Life” is an eye opening and engaging story that has provoked thought and inspired discussion about the issue of poverty.
TBU Productions harnessed the power of improvisation to help students positively address the problems that they encounter daily in urban areas. The movie exposes the horrors that urban kids are forced to endure, such as suffering from physical abuse and facing the temptations of the drug trade. Those who have never experienced this type of struggle have walked away from viewing the film with empathy and a better understanding of how to relate to this demographic of young people.
“Shot on a dime with exactly four pieces of equipment (camera, tripod, boom mike and field light), the film is a complex, hard-hitting ensemble work with huge ambitions and a sleek finish that belies its amateur origins. It looks good. It sounds good. And it has a lot to say: about life, death, hope, pain, the forces that shape teenagers and the need to go beyond the walls of high school to help them.”