Lacombe filmmaker wins grant to produce music video

By Sheldon Spackman
December 5, 2018 - 3:00pm

A local filmmaker is set to start work on her first music video, thanks to recently receiving $10,000 in grant funding from Telus STORYHIVE – an organization dedicated to supporting young creators from Alberta and B.C. through mentorship, distribution and funding support.

Lacombe’s Cassandra Paige Johnston, 26, is among 40 artists to recently receive the funding as part of STORYHIVE’s 2018 Music Video Edition and will now embark on producing a music video for Lacombe-based ‘doom metal’ band ‘Haaze’ and their song ‘Al.'

Johnston, who will also direct the video, says the song has a strong story line.

“It’s kind of like the idea about robots taking over and mass destruction,” she explains. “Our video is kind of along the same lines about a female robot who seeks revenge on the man who thinks he owns her. So that’s our premise for the story and very similar to the premise of the song.”

Johnston, whose project was among 221 applicants, hopes to shoot the video on January 2, 3 and 4 in the Red Deer -Lacombe area, preferably at a hotel ‘with a lot of character’.

“Editing and post-production would be afterwards and then the video will be released via the STORYHIVE platform in April,” she explains. “Every project that’s ever been funded goes straight to the STORYHIVE website and then it will be on Facebook and YouTube I believe they upload it to.”

As for the band, Johnston says Haaze plans to launch a new album in January with the video to be released along with the single ‘Al’ in April.

Johnston, a recent graduate of RDC’s Theatre Performance and Creation program, as well as Motion Picture Arts program says STORYHIVE is one of the most accessible grants for small, emerging filmmakers.

“This is my third time with STORYHIVE winning a grant but I’ve never done a music video,” she admits. “This is exciting because music videos have always been one of my biggest passions and part of the reason why I got into film. So I was really stoked to work with a band that was equally excited about film and about making movies.”

Johnston now anticipates rolling up her sleeves and experiencing the entire process of making a music video with a budget.

“I’m excited to see the different process between making a short film and editing to music,” she exclaims. “Also trying to collaborate my style versus their style, so it’s going to be interesting. There’s a lot of new challenges that I’m excited to try out.”

Following the video’s release, Johnston hopes to submit the video to film festivals and music video awards if applicable.

“This is a voter-based grant, so a huge ‘Thank You’ to everybody that voted and everybody who continues to support my art and dream, as well as the independent film scene and independent music scene.”

STORYHIVE officials say each artist that receives a $10,000 grant can use it to produce their music video, as well as for distribution opportunities, mentorship and training. 

The final projects will be available in summer 2019 on TELUS Optik TV On Demand and on

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