Penticton Secondary School Grade 11 student Ivy Allen is the Rotary Club of Penticton-Okanagan Student of the Month. Submitted photo

Young filmmaker reeling in the accolades

Penticton - Okanagan Rotary Club student of the month winner

If her name sounds familiar, it wouldn’t be surprising.

Ivy Allen, a Grade 11 student from Penticton Senior Secondary, is already an award-winning filmmaker.

“Ivy, is one of the most talented young directors I’ve had the privilege of working with,” said Andrew Knudsen, PSS drama and film/TV teacher of the first Rotary Student of the Month for the 2017-2018 school year. “Her eye and understanding of aesthetic, colour and storyline is well beyond her years.”

As far as she can remember, filmmaking has been an interest of hers. Her work/accolades date back to the 48-hour film award she won in 2013 when she was only 12. Last year, when her cousin, a business student at UBCO, asked for her help with her film class, Allen jumped on the opportunity. The result: their film won the competition at UBC in Kelowna and went on to get second place at the CBC Vancouver competition. Recently her film The Darlings was shown during the Arts Rising Festival.

“Making a full-length film is a long, difficult process and requires a great deal of work,” Allen said. “I enjoy every part of it, from script writing, filming, editing, producing, etc. — it is my passion and I intend to make a career of it.”

During the school year, Allen needs to juggle the demands on her time, as film making is time consuming, and she cannot let it interfere with school work.

“School is my first priority, and I need to keep up my marks, but come summer, it’s a different story,” she said.

Last summer, she worked on a promotional video for the Salvation Army and another for the Aboriginal Crisis response organization.

“Ivy’s enthusiasm for film-making extends beyond the walls of school and is fueled not by a grade or any accolade, but rather by her genuine passion for writing and producing films,” said Andrea DeVito, vice principal at PSS.

Because of her age, Allen faces the challenge of having people take her seriously. She finds she needs to put extra effort to convince them she is a serious professional who knows what she does and that she will deliver. Allen realizes that her career choice is risky and somewhat daunting. She is fully aware the road ahead will be demanding but she is confident and wants to pursue her dreams.

“I realize there is no guarantee of success. I intend to work hard at it, and want to hone my skills by pursuing studies in the arts and film program of a good school.”

Allen hopes to be accepted at UBC, which would allow her to do so close to home.

With her cousin, she has already made several award-winning short films and this summer developed their own film company Domino Masquerade. Allen is very excited by all aspects of setting up a business, from opening a joint bank account, to designing the website and everything in between. Combining her cousin’s business knowledge with her own growing film-making abilities bodes well for their future success.

Related: Penticton duo captures 48-hour film award

Creativity, innovation, self-motivation, passion and hard work are all attributes of this talented, young woman. Her teachers and those around her bet it won’t be long until they see her name on the big screen.

Student of the Month is a Rotary Club of Penticton-Okanagan initiative. The award aims to recognize outstanding students for unique achievement in scholastics, extracurricular activities, community involvement, leadership and service to others. The Rotary Club of Penticton-Okanagan is partnering with Penticton Secondary School and Princess Margaret Secondary School, aided by a generous financial contribution from Gateway Casinos as part of their proactive involvement in wide-ranging community service projects.