Emerson Los Angeles student Jesse Sheehan ’14, a Visual and Media Arts major, is overseeing operations of the Emerson Channel’s new West Coast office in conjunction with Diana Barton ’91, the station manager who works out of Emerson’s Boston campus.
“I just think this is such an exciting time,” Barton said. “This building is beautiful. I’m so excited for [the first group of students entering ELA to] have this chance.”
The Emerson Channel is planning to film a Los Angeles version of Backyard Boston, an hour-long program created for freshmen during orientation week before the start of the fall semester, which introduces them to hotspots around Boston, such as TD Garden, the Museum of Fine Arts, restaurants, and shops.
“If we can get two or three episodes of this Backyard Boston-type show on [the channel] this semester… then we’ll be happy with that,” Sheehan said.
Sheehan is hoping the LA version of the show might include segments about theaters and restaurants such as Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, which features comedy shows, Sushistop restaurant, and Mission Cantina restaurant.
Along with the show, students will also have the chance to pitch their own story ideas.
Barton and Sheehan say production of Emerson Channel shows is an important opportunity for seniors.
“It’s their last chance to have a bunch of equipment and a crew…before they graduate,” Sheehan said. “If they have an idea, then they have access to equipment that would normally cost thousands of dollars to rent.”
In addition to his work for the Emerson Channel, Sheehan is an intern on the hit TV drama Mad Men in the props department.
Barton, who worked in TV in Los Angeles for 12 years before moving to Boston, has produced hundreds of shows, including live red-carpet specials before the Emmys and the Academy Awards. She is excited for the Emerson Channel’s new Los Angeles presence.
“I hope and think the students will look back on it proudly,” Barton said, “that they were able to kick off something wonderful and big and something that can only grow as the LA campus grows.”