Newly commissioned by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, That’s Show Biz! is a short film based on a diary kept by Betty Huber. Depicting her life in show business as a circus performer, the diary recounts Betty’s fascinating life through charming, detailed illustrations, rather than words.
Betty’s daughter Fritzi Huber showed Halsey Institute Director Mark Sloan the diary, knowing his longstanding interest in the circus (he authored the book Wild, Weird, and Wonderful: The American Circus 1901-1927, as Seen by Photographer F. W. Glasier). Desiring to help the already captivating drawings come to life, Sloan worked with longtime collaborators Dave Stewart Brown and Nathan Koci to produce a video fly-through of the diary. In this video, Betty Huber cartwheels, swings on the trapeze, and soars through the air once more.
"In 1989 my mother was diagnosed with cancer. By 1990 she was given three months to live, but she stayed with us for another seventeen years, cancer free. However, this diagnosis set her to the task of telling her story, the story of Betty Huber, aka Betty Patrick, Parroff, Scheutz, Betty of the Sensational Kays, all in the pages of a tattered diary."
This video was commissioned by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston School of the Arts in South Carolina. The images from Betty Huber’s diary That’s Show Biz! were supplemented by photographs from the Huber family album with images of Betty Huber and others in her orbit. This video is on view at the Halsey Institute from May 19 - July 8, 2017.
Executive Producer: Mark Sloan
Director and Producer: Dave Stewart Brown
Animator: Andrew Campbell
Original soundtrack: “Prospect Waltz”
Composed and performed by Nathan Koci