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Catherine Tatge ’72: A Filmmaker Giving Back to Lawrence

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Lawrence chapter.

Catherine Tatge’s experience at Lawrence was much like our own. She left Lawrence not really sure of what she wanted to do, but quickly figured it all out. Interviewing her was comforting because I share the same uncertainty about my future career path in film. Leaving the Lawrence bubble can be an unsettling prospect, but Catherine’s story shows that with hard work, adventure, and some good luck everything can work out.
While at Lawrence, Catherine’s favorite class was Freshman Studies. Outside of the classroom she was involved in Gorilla Theater. She also took part in activism movements, doing her part to be involved and informed with different social issues. When I asked her how her time at Lawrence led her to become involved in film, she explained that “it was an accident that I got involved in film”. However it seems that her activism in college helped her create films focused on changing the world around us. After graduation, Catherine moved to New York City where a friend suggested that she become involved in documentary filmmaking. Catherine told me that her own films are influenced by one of her favorite directors, Felini. An Italian director (1920-1993), Filini wrote and directed notable films such as, 8 ½ (1963), La Dolce Vita (1960) and Rome, Open City (1945). Much like Felini, her documentaries deal with “understanding the human condition.”
Film and other media are a great part of Catherine’s life, and she stressed to me that we should make it a part of our lives as well. Lawrence has made that possible especially now that the film department received a major grant from Tom and Julie Hurvis, both Lawrence alums. Catherine further explains why media is important to Lawrentians saying, “The language of our generation is visual. We use media to communicate ideas.” Whether you’re a biology or anthropology major, knowing basic film techniques will be important in some capacity in your future career.
There are a lot of film related events going on at Lawrence. For instance, the LU Film club holds meetings on Mondays or get involved with the Civic Life Project, a project that engages students in civic acts outside of Lawrence. Catherine will also be putting together workshops on script writing and directing, among other things, so you can look forward to many exciting opportunities in the coming months.  

Ariella Morik is a senior at Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin studying English and Film Studies. She has served as Vice-President of Her Campus™ Lawrence for the past year and is excited to take the position of Campus Correspondent. She is an active student within her academic department and is Vice President of Programming and Social Events of the Alpha Zeta chapter of Delta Gamma. After graduation, she plans to pursue a law degree or a masters in creative writing. When she's not busy with her academic and co-curricular engagements, she finds time to run outdoors and spend time with her friends.