Interview with Roxanne Brousseau-Félio

Roxanne Brousseau-Félio

Artistic Director ~ Levure Litteraire.

Content creator as Artistic Director/Producer/Editor, curating, promoting & harnessing the Arts delivering unrivaled experiences internationally. TV/Film Media work from France, Los Angeles, Texas and Ottawa. Director on Board w/Press Club of Canada, Project Mgmt/Press Attaché/Embassy events, Published Author, Mentoring/Facilitator/Leadership in Primary/Junior Education

MultiMedia-Intl.com

www.msperceptions.com

interview curated by Maristella Angeli

Maristella Angeli: Your professional career is full of experiences, which of these do you consider most significant? 

Roxanne Brousseau Félio: Being accepted into the Bachelor of Arts program specializing in Communications Production and combining Visual Arts and Languages at the University of Ottawa was a significant steppingstone to my professional career. Outside campus life, I worked part-time as a security officer at the National Gallery of Canada, a great place to work protecting Fine Art!!! I also enrolled in a professional school of dance, studied Jazz Ballet for a year and I was enrolled in a Makeup Artistry school. The Rita Mansfield Agency. I became a certified Makeup Artist under the guidance of a very talented makeup artist and focused on makeup for Film and TV. That investment along with my academic studies would prove to be my entry into the Film TV industry abroad. When I moved to Texas to pursue my Master’s degree, I combined my curriculum studies with their on campus PBS affiliate KAMU-TV. 

After volunteering at the TV station, I got a job as a production assistant. The competition was strong but I had a skill the station had not considered: TV Makeup. That position evolved to become the Producer of a segment called 15 Magazine. I was the 1st to propose going live and it proved to be a great success. That overall experience was quite significant. I then worked under the guidance of the Director of the Texas Real Estate Research Centre (TRERC) on campus. He gave me many opportunities to refine my craft all the while working as the studio editor, videographer, makeup artist, do voice overs for the daily radio public service announcements called The Realty Report.  He also gave me the opportunity to Produce a National TV Commercial. The TRERC sponsored me in conjunction with the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) to produce and host a workshop called Camera Face where local television anchors learned about the techniques of applying television makeup. I was hired to produce and edit segments for the TAMU Civil Engineering Dept. and the Psychology dept. 

After graduating, a significant milestone, I moved to Los Angeles, and while waiting for my permanent residency, I volunteered on several Film and TV productions with USC and UCLA as a makeup artist. I also enrolled in several courses at UCLA and attended several workshops through the American Film Institute (AFI) learning all I could about the TV/Film Production industry. I continued to study state-of-the-art trends with several Hollywood masters of the makeup/special effects industry, from the Westmores to Maurice Stein at Cinema Secrets . All in all, I would say Maristella, that education and learning a craft as a side specialty was important and quite significant.  

I returned to Canada for a year while permanent residency was being processed. In Ottawa I worked with Crawley Films and Bradson Mercantile for a series of television commercials. Finally before heading back to Los Angeles, I worked with Director Kenneth Johnson as Production Coordinator for Walt Disney Television’s feature The Liberators which was in production locally. 

Back in Los Angeles, I got my 1st big break working as an Executive Assistant/Production Coordinator for Producers at NEW WORLD TELEVISION (NWTV) which was headed at the time by today’s Lionsgate President Jon Feltheimer and retired Ed Gradinger. That was a notable moment in my professional career because NWTV introduced me to commercial TV and the business side of it. Working on a show like the Emmy Award winning series “The Wonder Years”, I learned about logistics and everything involved in launching a TV pilot: from script re-writes to scouting locations, wardrobes, set design, contracts, ratings, and building rapport with industry professionals. It taught me about a standard of excellence in a very competitive market and how to master organizational skills especially because I was working on eight television pilots at the same time, shows and features like Tour of Duty, Crime Story, The Hulk, Hellraiser, 18 Again!, Sledge Hammer!, A Fine Romance, Zorro, Murphy’s Law, The Robert Guillaume show and the mini-series Elvis & Me, which was partly filmed in Quebec city. That’s where speaking French became an asset! All this understanding of the industry and its specialties, was worthwhile and kept creating opportunities. 

Finally returning to Canada to raise a family after having worked 5 years in LA, I couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to work for the world famous William Morris Agency (WMA) headed up by Norman Brokaw, a Hollywood legend in itself. I had the privilege of working with him personally. He served as the president, chief executive officer, and chairman of the WMA. He represented Marilyn Monroe, Clint Eastwood, Kim Novak, Elvis and Priscilla Presley, Warren Beatty and many more. I worked in the story dept. where all the scripts were reviewed for packaging, that is, assigning actors, directors with the writers. To this day, I draw upon these most significant experiences in my life.

 

M.A.: Places, meetings, special affections: how important were they for you? 

R.B.F.: Too many to share, so I will fast forward to the present. Recently I celebrated my birthday on an adventure in Costa Rica at a divine place called Blue Spirit.  It really had me catch up with myself and meet some fascinating individuals who shared so much wisdom and life experience. I made some new friends and the richness of our exchanges in such an enlightening place was extremely special. I am so grateful to have started the year on such a fulfilling note of renewal.  

I have great memories of all the students I mentored and had the privilege of reaching and teaching over the years. They are the ones who had an impact on me. I am a registered teacher with the Ontario College of Teachers and will always be open to mentoring and guiding students when opportunities arise.

I hold dear all memories of family and friends, past to present and I look forward to creating many new moments together. Most recently, a wonderful colleague who I had the honor of working with from our Press Club of Canada board, Rosaleen Dickson passed away, 75 years a journalist. We produced a segment called “Journalism is.” I think of her often and can hear her smiling eyes as we had many views on the politics of journalism and more… Great Great moments. 

M.A.: Which knowledge and experience, do you think, were fundamental for your expertise in cinematographic world?

R.B.F.: I had great teachers, masters of their craft. I observed everything and listened attentively to absorb all I could from their teaching.  Film maker editor Jean Oser (whose film career spanned over 60 years worked as a sound mixer and editor for several of Georg Wilhelm Pabst’s films, an Austrian theatre and film director);  Photographer Alain Desvergnes (a French photographer, one of the key figures of the recognition of photography in France in the years 1970-1980, and founder of the Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie in Arles, France);  Film directors Ara Madzounian and Sylvette Artinian both graduate film directors from UCLA; The Texas Real Estate Research Center’s Director who taught me many aspects of multi-media. I think what became fundamental for me was connecting with expertise, and getting a lot of practical experience even as a volunteer, and really absorbing everything that was going on related to the craft.

M.A.: When you taught art and technology, what projects you proposed to your students?

R.B.F.: All of the projects that I propose to the students, tap into:

  • Multiple intelligences
  • Creativity
  • Multi-Media
  • Multi-sensorial experiences
  • No boundaries
  • Exploratory in nature
  • State-of-the-art techniques
  • Research

M.A.: How do you proceed in your artistic creations, and what are your techniques? 

R.B.F.: I use a variety of media, from multiple audio/video software. 

  • I combine physical and digital painting.
  • I handcraft artifacts from found material and resources.
  • I am inspired from music, nature, world events leading to making a difference in a positive way.

M.A.: Often you have dealt with social issues in your artistic elaborations. What function do the artist and the art have in today’s society?

R.B.F.: Art functions as a communication tool to relate ideas.

  • Reflect events in society.
  • Personal reactions from my interpretation of events and relate what I see as important.
  • In essence, it is a visual conversation.

M.A.: You have participated in group shows in Los Angeles, Estonia, Italy, that take care online livestream events with an accessibility of over 35 countries, and that connects artists creatively, from their art studios. How do you remember your experiences?

R.B.F.: I remember them as productive, meaningful, culturally enriching and challenging.

A real exercise of communication and witnessing other artists in their lives from their studios. I see it as curating connections between artists. 

M.A.: As artistic director of “Levure Litteraire” a multidisciplinary and multi-lingual international quarterly magazine for information and cultural talent, you have involved and valued many talented artists. What made you more gratified?

R.B.F.: This is ongoing work. I appreciate the freedom to feature my own selection of international artists.

  • To expand the definition of “fine arts”.
  • To produce original videos that highlight the talent featured in each publication. 

M.A.: The use of a sharing platform has been fundamental in the creation of livestream online programs with a reachability of over 35 countries that connect artists creatively from their art studios. Is the use of technological means essential?

R.B.F.: No it isn’t essential but it saves time, it is cost efficient and increases reachability where it is immediately convenient and accessible. 

M.A.: Collaborative art and shared participation are your strengths with an advantageous use of multimedia, but actually as the individualism progresses,  many young people have problems related to the continued use of smartphone. What do you think?

R.B.F.: A smartphone is a tool, a resource. It serves as a great benefit when you learn to maximize its use. However there remains a danger when users neglect to participate in their physical environment outside their smart phone. Especially if they tune out to the reality of what is happening around them. There are also privacy issues to consider . The advantage remains that it delivers a multitude of conveninent and accessible resources.

M.A.: Future projects?

R.B.F.: In my 5th year working as Artistic Director with Rodica Draghincescu, the Founder of Levure littéraire, whom is based in France. We are currently in pre-production for LL No. 14.

I am at the pre-production phase of launching and expanding our LL’s direction taking the lead as the Producer of Levure Web TV with Rodica as the co-host in the near future along with other segments through MultiMedia-Intl. 

I am taking Master classes with industry professionals and working on a script that was reviewed in the past by the WMA and showed potential. 

Biography

Roxanne Brousseau-Félio

Born in Ottawa, Canada. Graduated from Texas A&M University(TAMU) with a Master’s degree in Educational Television & Technology while interning as a Producer for KAMU-TV (PBS Affiliate) and working at the Texas Real Estate Research Center as a Multi-Media Production Coordinator. Moved to Los Angeles and pursued a career in the Film/Television industry. Returned to her native Ottawa, completing a teaching degree and teaching Art, Technology and French as a second language for primary to junior middle school students. Co-Authored the curriculum connected historical novel The Young Civil Engineer – The Quebec Bridge, distributed across libraries in Canada. Roxanne is currently freelancing producing videos and serving as Artistic Director for Levure littéraire. She actively exhibits and is represented by the Los Angeles Centre for Digital Art (LACDA). 

MultiMedia-Intl.com

spreadartrox@gmail.com


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    • Maristella Angeli