Celebrating our Spotlight Academy Inductees at #LAFSSpotlight
On Friday, September 20, The Los Angeles Film School community came together to honor the first five inductees of our Spotlight Academy. President Tammy Elliott and Alumni Relations Director Joe Byron were the hosts for the awards show and opened with a heartfelt welcome to an intimate crowd at Ivar Theatre in Hollywood.
“I already have deep emotional feelings for all of you, but I do want to start with saying hello and welcoming our alumni,” said Elliott. “Welcome Home!”
Elliott and Bryon bantered with each other on stage about their time at the school—Elliott is eight months into her tenure as president, and Byron celebrated his 20th year in August. “You win, you win,” Elliott joked.
Highlights From The Ceremony
There was a palpable mix of playfulness and excitement as each mentor took the stage to introduce their inductee. René Garza Aldape was the first mentor to introduce five-time Grammy-winning engineer and Spotlight inductee, Andrés Borda Zabala.
“Andrés flourished in his career as an engineer while working in Mexico and Colombia, and he won five Grammys,” said Aldape. “I think if someone is a five-time Grammy winner, he is strongly entitled to receive the Spotlight Award.”
Hannah Lux Davis’s mentor, Ashley Sheen, wore a “thank u, next” tee and declared that she’s Hannah’s number one fan as she introduced her long-time friend to the stage. “I met Hannah when I was 17 here in LA at a summer film camp,” said Sheen. “It was one of the most transformative experiences of both of our lives.”
“Fast forward to now, Hannah is a prolific artist and director. She has worked with some of the biggest names in music, including Kacey Musgraves, Halsey, Demi Lovato, Lil Wayne, Drake, Niki Minaj and earlier this year she broke YouTube’s record for most views in a day for Ariana Grande’s thank u, next video,” said Sheen.
Actor and comedian Adam Devine was the surprise guest of the evening and addressed the audience with a memorable speech about Spotlight inductee, Kyle Newacheck. “That’s right, I’m Kyle’s mentor,” Devine said. “I taught him everything he knows!”
Devine went on to talk about how he has known Kyle since they were 18 years old. “Kyle actually got me my very first acting job ever,” said Devine. “No joke, my first on-camera acting job was here through the L.A. Film School, and I hope no one can find this video,” said Devine.
The Future of The Spotlight Academy
The night concluded with all five inductees getting back on stage for a final standing ovation. President Tammy Elliott closed the ceremony by presenting the first class of The Los Angeles Film School Spotlight Academy to the crowd as well as the online audience watching from Full Sail in Winter Park, FL.
“Honorees, you represent the best in everything we hope for all of our students,” said Elliott. “Your heart, your commitment, your dedication to this vibrant industry, and whether you know it or not, the countless students that you have inspired and will continue to inspire.”
“Thank you so much for being a shining example of what the future holds for the Spotlight Academy and The Los Angeles Film School.”
The Spotlight Academy is a new school tradition in celebration of our 20th anniversary. The Academy’s mission is to celebrate graduates who have not only acquired notable achievements within the entertainment industries but have also served as an inspiration to the school’s community of students, alumni, faculty and staff.
If you can believe it, the first official class at The L.A. Film School had only 15 students. Today, we have more than 10,000 alumni of The Los Angeles Film School and The Los Angeles Recording School, a division of LAFS. We look forward to celebrating many more of our legendary alumni in the years to come with all of you. Watch the inductee speeches and see special industry guests take the stage below!