The Scholar: Kevin O’Sullivan
The Project: Sketch, Please!
The Essential Question: Inspired by the comedy genre popularized by Saturday Night Live and Key and Peele, Mr. O’Sullivan wrote, cast, directed, and filmed a collection of sketch comedy skits based on the theme of adolescents in the 21st century, or, as he puts it, “how kids my age interact with society and the funny ways we view things compared to the generation above us.” Calling upon actor friends (including others from the Williston Scholars performing arts class), he produced three sketches of roughly three minutes each: “A Useful Invention,” “A Contemporary Conversation,” and “Interviewing a Millennial.”
Notable Quote: “I’m not acting in it. I originally wanted to, but then I thought that the only way for me to get the exact shots that I wanted was to film it.”
Biggest Challenge: “I had to write everything, film everything, and edit everything, so it was very complicated. I had to get all of my actors in one place at the same time, and I had to do a lot of reshoots for different sketches. And then, after that, I had to edit it all. Editing, in general, was something I had never been familiar with, so I had to teach myself how to edit the videos.”
Surprising Discovery: “I learned that I enjoyed doing it. Going into it, [Performing Arts teacher] Emily Ditkovski left it ambiguous for what we could focus on. I decided to go with comedy, and it was very fun. It was hard work, and a lot of work, but I had a lot of fun doing it.”
Tip for Future Scholars: “Do something that you are actually passionate about, because if you do something that you don’t like or that you think people want you to do, you are not going to have a fun time doing it. You have to do something that you like in order for it to be good.”