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Welcome to SmallMiraclesTV! Our production team has worked long and hard to deliver episodes based on the fantastic true stories from the acclaimed best-selling book series written by Yitta Halberstam and Judith Leventhal. Our next episode that we are presenting is called "A Soldier's Note", the remarkable story of Capt. Robert Ellicombe in 1862 during the American Civil War.

While producing this episode we were lucky enough to have two Civil War regiments working with us, 125th NYVI Co. D located in Troy, N.Y and 124th NYVI Co. A "Orange Blossoms" located in Orange County, N.Y. Both regiments have the goal to honor the soldiers who have fought and died in the Civil War. Their dedication to this cause brings them to recreate battle scenes for the public in states like Virginia, Tennessee, and Georgia and for film productions like SMALL MIRACLES.

During production, they came equipped with full uniforms and guns that were authentic to the period. They even worked as Technical Advisors to us on the project and helped the Art Department by supplying tents and other authentic items that our budget wouldn't otherwise allow us to obtain.

It is also worth noting that our bugle player, John Charles Thomas, is a member of the Grammy Award-winning Chestnut Brass Company, which performs music on original instruments. One of the sets of instruments is a set of 19th Century (Civil War era) saxhorns. The Chestnut Brass Company have long played music from the Civil War era on them, in addition to music of earlier and later on their respective instruments as well.

The bugle that Mr. Thomas was playing on the shoot was obtained for the filming from the Miller Musical instrument Collection of New York. It is a 19th century "clairon d'ordonnance" which is the type of military bugle (made in France) that virtually all of the US and CSA armies were outfitted with. Some of the instruments were made of brass, and some were copper. The instrument that he used was made of copper.

p>Some time ago Mr. Thomas took the instrument to the West Point Museum in West Point NY, and compared it to the bugle that sounded "TAPS" at Appomattox Court House by a member of U.S. Grant's company at the surrender of Robert E. Lee (the Army of Northern Virginia). The instruments are identical in construction, length, pitch, etc., the only difference being that the West Point bugle is made of brass.

So often in filmmaking the credit for a great piece of work lands on the lead Actors, Director, or Writer…and most of the time the accolades are well deserved. This time I felt that it was important to give proper credit to the two Civil War regiments and master musician John Charles Thomas. Without them it would've been impossible to accomplish what we did with our time and financial constraints. Filmmaking is a collaborative medium. It truly takes many specifically skilled individuals working in harmony for a common goal. Everyone who worked on this project deserves credit for their contributions to this episode…but without our Civil War reenactment team…it simply would not have worked.

This episode is dedicated to the many Men and Women of the Armed Service who gave the ultimate sacrifice in defending this great nation of ours. And to the Soldiers currently in service defending the United States from points all over the world, we salute you!

To everyone else who has viewed this episode, Thank you!….and remember that November the 11th is Veteran's Day... and Small Miracles happen everyday.
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"SMALL MIRACLES" Costume Designer Julie Saltman talks about her process of designing wardrobe for the characters of Mort (Judd Hirsch) and Esty (Kathryn Kates) and the difficult task of being authentic to each time period.Some of Julie's challenges were to dress Principal Actors and Background Actors for Nazi-occupied Poland in 1939, 1970's America, India, and Jerusalem, and the American Civil War of 1862.

In order to execute these tasks with a limited budget and a short staff, Julie needed to be creative in utilizing her resources. She pulled some of her wardrobe from the stage plays "Jesus Christ Superstar" and "Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat" and also utilized real Civil War reenactors for Episode 1 to stay true to the authenticity of Union and Confederate soldiers.

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The Costume Design of Small Miracles

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"SMALL MIRACLES" Production Designer Jesika Farkas shares the details of designing the sets for 4 episodes at Saugerties Performing Arts Factory.Jesika talks of her initial conversation with EP/Director Moshe Mones and how they had to make bold choices while still giving an original take on classic 1950's television.

Moshe and Jesika have worked together before (on the 2013 feature film "Dovid Meyer") so he entrusted her to fulfill a shared vision while managing the details of creating sets for Nazi-occupied Poland in 1939, an Ashram in India, 1970's Jerusalem, and the American Civil War of 1862 among others. All in all, Jesika and her team created 22 sets from scratch over the course of a demanding 15 day shooting schedule. Being a local to the Hudson Valley area of New York, Jesika was able to use many of her local resources in order to capture a big vision on a limited budget. She talks of the challenges of managing her crew through the process of building and striking sets in the confines of a 2,200 square foot studio. She also talks about her impressionist design ideas and what inspired some details of her work.

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The Set Design of Small Miracles

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"SMALL MIRACLES" Cinematographer Adrian Correia speaks about his process of filming the series using the innovative and unique BriteShot LED lights.Founded in 2009 by Peter Ticktin, Roy McDonald and Irene Conrad, BriteShot(r) began the 3 year research and development process to bring its first product, The Luminator(r), to market. Ever since, BriteShot(r) has been hard at work with a customer-minded focus; developing products and patented technologies that provide you unlimited creative possibilities while saving you and your production money.

These lights came in handy during the difficult task of filming 4 episodes during a 15 day shooting schedule. The BriteShot lights were very affective in creating special effects lighting like strobe, lightning strikes, fire effects, and color shifts. They were also versatile enough to be used as Key Lights for Actors without changing out heads which enabled Adrian's team to save time during the process of lighting each scene.

To learn more about BriteShot visit their website www.briteshot.com

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The Lighting Design of Small Miracles

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This Behind the Scenes video will give you (the audience) additional insight into the "Small Miracles" production process. This video features Executive Producer/Writer/Director Moshe Mones explaining the process of bringing the books to the screen. Executive Producer Darren Schwartz talks of the plan for "Small Miracles - The Series" and the state of television today. Cinematographer Adrian Correia talks about his creative process in shooting both black-and-white and color on the RED Epic camera. Production Designer Jesika Farkas gives us insight on her difficult task of creating these worlds by scratch on our stage, the Saugerties Performing Arts Factory (SPAF) in Saugerties, New York.

The Small Miracles web series is also Executive Produced by David Catalano with special thanks to the Hudson Valley Film Commission, Brette Goldstein Casting, Company 1 Productions, Brite Shot, and the people and businesses of Saugerties, Kingston, Woodstock, New Paltz, and the entire Hudson Valley of Upstate New York.

 

 

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10 Minute Behind the Scenes

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Welcome to SmallMiraclesTV!
Welcome to SmallMiraclesTV! Our production team has worked long and hard to deliver episodes based on the fantastic true stories from the acclaimed be...
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The Costume Design of Small Miracles
"SMALL MIRACLES" Costume Designer Julie Saltman talks about her process of designing wardrobe for the characters of Mort (Judd Hirsch) and Esty (Kathr...
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The Set Design of Small Miracles
"SMALL MIRACLES" Production Designer Jesika Farkas shares the details of designing the sets for 4 episodes at Saugerties Performing Arts Factory.Jesik...
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