The Man Behind The Camera Crew
He has the appearance and personality of everyone’s favorite uncle but the only difference is he doesn’t buy you that gift your parents distinctly said you couldn’t have, instead he teaches you how to professionally record an event. Although he doesn’t work at The Frank Sinatra School of the Arts (FSSA), he manages his own company and dedicates the rest of his time to leading a crew of students in recording all of FSSA’s events.
Lance Burns, father of senior instrumental major Alex Burns and co-owner of Nova Printing Co., spends his free time doing photography and videography for events like Bar Mitzvahs and dance recitals.
Two years ago Lance reached out to Andre Vazquez, faculty member and Production Manager at FSSA, and offered to help record the graduation ceremony using his professional equipment. Since then he has become a regular helping hand throughout the school’s show season.
This past September, Mr. Burns was asked to manage a group of students that dedicate their free time to working as camera operators or video directors for all of the shows and events at FSSA. In addition to the school’s equipment, Mr. Burns brings his own cameras, tripods, and recording system and spends time after work teaching his crew how to use the equipment and preparing for upcoming events.
Students have expressed that they are not always able attend every show, but they do want to support their peers by watching the shows online, and that’s where Mr. Burns comes in. He is able to record the shows and events with high quality, edit them within 48 hours and then post them on FSSA’s website for all to see.
Why does Mr. Burns put so much of his own time and effort into something he doesn’t get paid for?
“It gives me a different thing to do, gets me out of my office and away from the work I do on a normal basis. I also enjoy teaching so for me this is something fun to do,” said Mr. Burns.
Mr. Burns doesn’t ask to receive pay for what he does. The only thing he requests is that the audio booth, where he stays during shows, be stocked at all times with double stuffed Oreos for him and his crew.
Although his son is graduating this year Mr. Burns says he will not be going anywhere.
“I’m not leaving just because he’s graduating. I enjoy this experience and my daughter plans on attending Sinatra so I’ll be sticking around,” he said.
– by Natalie Martino ’19