By Kaitie Eddy
Bullying is an issue many people face on a day-to-day basis — not only kids, but also adults. Its effects run deep, and can leave lasting impressions on those who face it.
The Capital University Chordsmen wanted to shed some light on this issue. The concept for the resulting video was inspired by conductor Craig Courtney’s son, Nathan Patrick Courtney, after he took his own life in January 2017 during his struggle with bullying and depression.
Craig Courtney is a longtime faculty member in Capital's Conservatory of Music and director of the Chordsmen, a large men’s chorus that sings a wide range of musical styles. He is also the chief editor at Beckenhorst Press, publisher of the Capital University Choral Series.
With the help of Xavier McAllister, a Capital Electronic Media and Film graduate who also filmed the video for “Father of Light” in 2015, Courtney and the Chordsmen created the video for “I Will Rise,” by Chris Tomiln, to depict the complex and internal struggles of bullying.
“We didn't want to just show cliché images of ‘schoolyard bullying.’ In the video, the shadow figures represent the internal fears, feelings, and struggles of the characters standing exposed in a large dark room,” McAllister said. “We felt that this would allow the viewer to focus on the emotion of the situation rather than the situation itself; hopefully giving them license to look at the issue of bullying with a new perspective.”
The video is intended to share the message that no one has to be alone in their fight against bullying, and it’s okay to ask for help.
“Everyone came together to create this, and I think it turned out to be more than we expected it could be at the start of this journey,” McAllister said. “This was such an amazing experience and it won't be the last time we work together. I do have plans to produce more videos like this in the near future with the Chordsmen.”
– Xavier McAllister
If you or anyone you know is suffering from bullying or depression, don’t be afraid to reach out. The Center for Health and Wellness offers a variety of resources for students, including counseling, programs, and links to off-campus resources. Find them on campus in the Kline building or call 614-236-6114. If you feel you are in a life-threatening situation and you’re on the Bexley campus, call Public Safety at 614-236-6666.