No Do-Overs

For their annual “Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World” exhibition, Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park was planning to add to the 47 magnificent trees and displays representing unique international cultures and customs. They hoped to offer visitors an immersive experience that explored the diverse festive fabric that exists in West Michigan during the holiday season by showing ancient traditions that are still celebrated today. The film, Joy! began.

Joy! Trailer | 1:20

Four centuries-old traditions celebrated in West Michigan were filmed over a two-year period.  These are annual community events with ceremonies, parades, concerts and programs of various lengths – from one to over seven hours. Once begun, each proceeds uninterrupted. So, for us, every one was “go” time – with no do-overs. Extensive planning determined critical timings, multiple camera placements, lighting challenges, moments not to miss, and more.  We also needed to respect each celebration and not intrude – all while trying to create an immersive experience for the viewer.  At each event, as many as four mobile camera operators kept in constant communication through two-way radios. Where possible, we pushed handheld cameras close into areas to bring viewers more into the experience. Over 40 hours of sound and imagery was edited into the 15-minute film Joy! – which plays continuously in the Gardens’ Hoffman Auditorium throughout the holiday season.



Executive Producers






Title Graphics

Sound Mix

Kerry Rasikas

Lisa Mulry

Maureen Nollette, Lisa Roo

Alan Rosas

Thom Bell

Thom Bell
Josh Green
Brandon Dexter
Scott Graham
Kerry Rasikas

Grey Christian

Stuart Poltrock, Sound Post Studios

We also helped the Gardens celebrate their 10th Anniversary season in 2005.  Filmed over four seasons, The Eye Needs Something Too, highlights the remarkable blend of nature and art in one of the Midwest’s most unusual and breathtakingly beautiful attractions. Lena Meijer’s comments at the end are worth the watch alone.

Several TV spots that utilized footage from the film were also produced.

The Eye Needs Something Too | 11:37

Summer | :30