Dordt College News

‘Hold On’ premiere May 3

April 29, 2008

The music video “Hold On” will be shown Saturday, May 3, at the Dordt Campus Center (lower level Grille area). There will be a 7, 8, and 9 p.m. viewing, with each 15-minute show followed by discussion time.

Freewill donations will be accepted for PEAK Ministries, and copies of the video will also be available for a $5 donation.

It started with a dream and a song.

It will culminate May 3 at Dordt College’s Campus Center, with the premiere and release of a music video, as well as the launch of PEAK Ministries and a video production company, Distorted Reflections.

Dordt students Eric Meeter and Pete Hessels figure they’ve each put about 400 hours into their shared individual studies project, from the writing of a song to the production of a movie video and the establishment of a non-profit ministry.

Their work gets them three credit hours closer to graduation. But much more importantly, it’s the culmination of a shared passion, to use music and digital media for Christian ministry. “We were going to do it no matter what, we just figured we might as well get credit for it,” said Eric.

Meeter and Hessels met last year as freshmen, both living on the same floor at North Hall.

Hold OnEric is a sophomore from Spencer, IA, majoring in digital media production and youth ministry. Pete is from Dunnville, ON, majoring in digital media production. Eric’s passionate about music (he’s previously written other songs, and performs in Dordt vocal ensembles). Pete has a gift for envisioning video and bringing it from the camera to the screen. Both have created digital media in classes and in the college’s annual Prairie Grass Film Festival competition.

Their joint venture began when Eric talked to Pete about a song he’d written that he wanted to turn into a video. As they began storyboarding the song, it became clear Eric needed to write a final verse to provide some closure to the story. Once the song had an ending, they began making contacts for casting and staging the video.

“Everyone was really cooperative,” said Pete, particularly noting the local police department, emergency responders, a funeral home in Spencer, the Alton Catholic Cathedral, Lem's Auto Recycling, and the caretaker for a cemetery in Boyden.

Donations of $500-$600 helped fund the project, and fellow students were recruited to perform in the video. The cast for the project includes vocals by Meeter and Megan Kok (a freshman from Randolph, WI); Nathan Gorter on the guitar (a sophomore from Sioux Center); Jon Nederhoff on the bass guitar (a sophomore from Wellsburg, IA); Matt Vander Ark on the drums (a junior from Kalispell, MT); and Eric Meeter on the piano and synthesizer. Playing roles in the video were Brian Obermier (a friend of Eric’s from Spencer); Megan Kok; and Lisa Veurink (a freshman from Windom, MN).

The song, “Hold On,” was professionally recorded by Calen Moerman, Sioux Center.

The song relates the story of a drunk driver and the teenage girls whose lives were changed forever one fateful night. Much of the footage was filmed on a gravel road near Sioux Center, where they filmed for seven hours in -4 degree temperatures. Hessels and Meeter estimate they shot a total of 10 hours of raw footage in the production of the 15 minute video.

But the making of “Hold On” is just the beginning: the duo has already begun work on the formation of a non-profit web-based ministry. “We hope to produce two movies a year, do movie reviews, and eventually have an interactive site,” said Meeter.

They’ve done their homework, first writing a vision statement, then bylaws, articles of incorporation, and filing forms with the government for non-profit organization status. Long term goals include touring schools with their films, and opening a facility for after school ministry that would encourage the talents of kids, offer tutoring and counseling.

The name they’ve selected for their ministry is an acronym that summarizes their goals: PEAK stands for Personally Exemplifying and Affirming the Kingdom. “Our vision is to inspire thought and conversation,” said Meeter. With their first production, they should be off to a good start.

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