Otago Polytechnic and Fortune Collaborating Again

After the success of the 2016 collaboration on Grounded, the Fortune Theatre and Polytech welcomed the prospect to work together again, this time on the musical, Into the Woods. This was a perfect opportunity for the skills of the students, led by lecturer Jon Wilson, to help to create a fantasy, fairytale world.

Jon, a cinematographer by trade, worked with the Fortune’s Artistic Director Jonathan Hendry to imagine what was possible and how to achieve this. One of the challenges was successfully integrating the use of animation with human actors to bring to life an imaginary world. A group of talented design and communication students then took their vision and ran with it, producing animated sequences to visually communicate the fantasy environment for this entertaining musical.

The Otago Polytech Students are in their final year of a Bachelor of Design & Communication degree. The project began as a third year paper from which three students became interns to complete the production. They elected to work on this real-world project to enhance their own learning and give them an unique experience not many have the opportunity to explore before graduating. They spent four months on the special effects, clocking up well over 800 hours each!

A studio was set up away from their normal classroom to give them the experience of a real-life design studio with all the pressures and deadlines that they will encounter in the future. Students involved are Michael Smith, Jaimee Caffell, Becki Jones, Sherman Sreedhar and Tylah Ryan-Smitheram.


Watch the Otago Polytech’s video behind the scenes of their Communication Design students who worked with the Fortune Theatre to create stunning animations for the spellbinding musical, Into The Woods.

Into The Woods at the Fortune Theatre Dunedin in Collaboration with Otago Polytech