"SVARA" is the 2009 student documentary created by the annual international documentary class that Brooks Institute runs each year. Started around 20 years ago, this international doc class has become a Brooks Institute tradition. In addition to the documentary, the students also developed a DVD, a website, a book, held many screenings and gallery showings, etc. FYI, the 2011 doc "From Within" about Vietnam and the 2010 doc "Revelar los Enlaces" about Chile are also on the Cinema Cafe page.
What is unique about "SVARA" is that this annual international documentary class shot stills, video and recorded audio on location during the students' time in country to film their documentary. Some video had been used in previous annual docs from this class, but it was not fully integrated in the development, production and post production of the annual documentary project until "SVARA". One of the first rate elements to "SVARA" is the thoughtful integration of these diverse elements to create, what I think, is a complex and intriguing documentary on Southern India in a way that we had not been been able to do in the past at Brooks due to technical and resource challenges, this being the time before cameras became only digital, the development of affordable HD digital video cameras and digital lightweight audio recorders.
In the end, "SVARA" carries on the tradition of the excellence of the annual Brooks Institute international documentary class and we look forward to the next year's premiere of the international doc class in 2012 and hope that we will be able to highlight their work and interview the students for our show.