From "The King and I"

Accolades

What They’re Saying

 

Ivan Boden, photographer extraordinaire, captured the heart and soul of Bergen County Academies’ theatrical productions for the past 8 years!  Proscenium or arena-style staging, lavish musical or intimate one-act play, Ivan photographed three or four different productions each year and was indispensable in promoting our fledgling performing arts high school to our own school community, families in the county interested in applying to the school, state-wide and inter-state drama competitions, college theatre programs and international study abroad partnerships.

Ivan’s stills of our sets, lighting, costumes, hair and make-up along with his action shots of dance and incredibly expressive close-ups of our actors in motion brought us nominations and ‘wins’ at Montclair University’s Theatre Night, The New York Metros High School Musical Theatre Awards and the Paper Mill Playhouse Rising Star Awards.

Ivan’s photos displayed in our auditorium lobby were often what prompted potential students to apply to the school and when they graduated adorned their websites as they applied to college theatre programs.  Ivan’s photos traveled with us to Athens Greece in our partnership with Pierce College of the American College of Greece and were shown to The British American Drama Academy (BADA) as we sought a partnership that will begin this April.

It was the opportunity to include Ivan’s photographs of their work in their portfolios that enticed young professional costume, lighting and set designers to work for us.

Working with Ivan brought out the best in all of us: students, staff, faculty and parents.  His artistry allowed us to look our best; his dedication and professionalism were an inspiration (he once shot an entire show with a broken wrist!); his easy-going flexibility made it possible to stage professional-level photo shoots in a school setting. Finally, it is his own great humanity that enables Ivan Boden to truly see into the depth of each and every individual student’s work and capture it for all time.

Ivan is an exceptional theatrical photographer; I give him my highest endorsement.

Rebecca Strum, PhD
Performing Arts Coordinator
Academy for Visual and Perform Arts
Bergen County Academies
Hackensack, NJ


Ivan Boden devoted hundreds of hours to the award-winning, nationally renowned theatre department at Bergen County Academies in New Jersey as our show photographer. Carting his equipment, for YEARS, through terrible weather, packed parking lots, a few of his own injuries and crowded auditoriums, Ivan never missed a single show in 8 years of entirely selfless service to his daughter’s former high school program.  And while his act of volunteerism alone is breathtaking, his artistry as a theatre photographer is unparalleled. One of the most difficult forms to shoot, theatre presents the photographer with countless challenges from lighting to constantly moving actors, working around audiences, shooting both the massive stage packed with 75 actors and intimate close-ups between two characters. Ivan shoots it all, labors in loving detail over the finishing and finally shares his work with grateful young artists and their equally thrilled families.  

Ivan’s work has been invaluable to our program and students. Known for producing incredible work of the highest standards, if you’ve not seen a BCA production in person, only Ivan’s photographs can attest to the quality of the work. For students trying to attain admission at the top University programs in this county, their Ivan-packed portfolios and websites bursting with exquisite photographs documenting the complexity, depth and passion of their work has been one of the most vital and convincing aspects of their presentation. No theatre student from BCA leaves home without their Ivan photos and his visual documentation of our work is both archivally critical and deeply valuable as a living testament to having created something we all deeply loved.

Ivan is a doll. Funny, smart, kind, incredibly positive and a true artist, he knows how to put artists at ease in order to get their best work and reveal their true selves. His masterful understanding of light, color, story and composition make him one of the finest photographers I know and it has been the greatest pleasure possible to have known him, worked with him and been the beneficiary of his rare generosity.  

Victoria Pero
Performing Arts Teacher/Sustainability Advisor
Academy for Visual and Perform Arts
Bergen County Academies
Hackensack, NJ


I’ve had the pleasure of having Ivan photograph 8 productions that I’ve directed and have never once been disappointed in his work. He manages to capture the essence of the production in every photo and discovers moments I never even realized were there. His images allow the production to live on forever and I am so grateful to have gotten the chance to work with such a warm, skilled and professional person. 

Stephen Kaplan
Teacher of English/Performing Arts
Academy for Visual and Perform Arts
Bergen County Academies
Hackensack, NJ


Letters

 

Dear Ivan Boden,

My name is Gianna, and I just played Eva Perón in act one of BCA’s production of Evita. I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the absolutely gorgeous pictures you took for this show. They mean the world to me, and I will cherish the portraits and pictures taken during the show forever. I so appreciate you volunteering your time and efforts to take pictures for us every year. Good luck to you in California, and thank you so very much for everything!

Sincerely,
Gianna
Student, BCA

– – –

Hello Mr. Boden,

I wanted to thank you so much for the absolutely stunning pictures you took for our production of Evita!!! The pictures are so beautiful and you really captured the perfect moments.

I heard that you will not be here next year and am so sad because the pictures you take really do leave us with amazing memories of the shows, but I wish you the best in the future!

Thank you so much again for all that you have done!

Sarah
Student, BCA AVPA-T

– – –

To: Ivan Boden
So many beautiful images thanks to this amazing photographer, Ivan Boden. We won’t look the same without you!

Stephen Kaplan – Facebook
Professor or English
BCA


These are an absolute delight and the sets and lights are fabulous. You really are an amazing man.

Victoria Pero
Acting III & IV Theatre History I Voice and Speech I & II


From: Pero_Victoria
Subject: Evita – Saturday Evening
WOW WOW WOW WOW

Victoria Pero


From: Pero_Victoria
Subject: Evita – Full Dress Rehearsal Shots
To: Ivan Boden

I saw your first shots and they are magnificent. How can we go on without you?????????????


Hi Mr. Boden,

I just wanted to say thank you so much for coming and taking incredible pictures of BCA’s productions. It means a lot to be able to look at what the audience could see.

Sincerely,
Cassandra
Student, BCA AVPA


Hi,
Thank you so much for taking the photos during the dress rehearsal for Evita. They are amazing pictures and the cast really appreciates them.
Thanks again,
Jacqueline


Dear Mr. Boden,

Hello! I am Joyce and I am a freshman at BCA in theatre and I would just like to thank you for the stunning photos of our show. They really amazing and are so meaningful for me as it is my first show of many to come at BCA. Thank you so so much for your hard work and generosity. Again, the photos are magnificent and your photography is beautiful!

Many thanks,
Joyce
Student, BCA AVPA


Dear Ivan Boden,

This is Sarah, who played the Act II Eva in BCA’s Evita. I just wanted to thank you for coming in on your own time to both the dress rehearsal and each one of the shows. The pictures that you took are absolutely breath-taking and stunning, and since my freshman year (Antigone, Bat Boy and Macbeth), I have always adored looking through your website at the unique range and variety of photographs that you have managed to capture so beautifully. The artistry in your photos is completely stunning to me, and I have always admired how you are able to play with light and shadow, with different angles, and with so many more flavors that I do not posses the knowledge or the words to describe. When I look at your photos, I always see something different. The specific moments that you are able to catch are incredible, at times lovely and delicate, at others melancholy and emotional and expressive, and some of my favorites are those that have such a vibrancy to them, in personality and in the feeling of seeing something real and true and perfect just the way that it is. I want to thank you for giving life to all of these photos and for sharing them on your website. Often times, I am amazed because there is so much truth in the pictures that you take, and yet, they are so perfect that I have a hard time believing that these are real people and places and things, and that you are able to see them in such a wonderful way. So I thank you for all of the many minutes, hours, days, and years, shows and photographs that you have spent and been to and created. For me, these are the of diary entries of memories that I never want to forget, and of moments that have meant the world to me, and I have you to thank for being able to look back and see who I was, what I did, who was with me, and how much fun we all had together. There are not enough thank you’s in all of the world that could do justice to show my appreciation for what you have done for everyone in our giant theatre family. All I say is that I wish you well in all of the projects that are to come and the wonderful moments ahead of you on this next step in your life journey. We will miss you terribly, and I don’t know what we’ll do without you, but I am glad that even more people will be able to know how talented you are, and that you will be able to touch their lives in a similar way to how you touched mine and everyone’s at BCA. Thank you so very much, and I hope that you will always enjoy whatever you do, wherever you go. I cannot wait to see what amazing photographs you will take in the future!

Wishing you all the best,
Sarah
Student, BCA AVPA


Dear Mr. Boden,

Thank you so much for four years of incredible pictures for BCA shows and performances. I cannot tell you how invaluable all of your amazing photographs have been for me in my college process, and I cannot thank you enough for everything you have done for the students and faculty of BCA. You will truly be missed.

Once again, thank you for everything. You are the best!

Sincerely,

Jordan
Student, BCA AVPA


Hi,

My name is Max. I am a sophomore in theatre at BCA currently, and was a member of the cast of Evita I just wanted to thank you so much for these beautiful photographs and for all of the years you spent helping us out at BCA. It truly means a lot to me. It’s always just absolutely amazing to look at your photos after being in a show, and it helps me, as a cast member, see what the audience can see. Thank you so much.

Sincerely,

Max
Student, BCA AVPA-T


Mr. Boden,

I am a freshman at BCA and this was my very first production here. I just wanted to say thank you for taking such wonderful pictures! Now I can always look back and remember how much fun this experience was for me! Thank you so so much for all of your hard work!

Julia
Student, BCA AVPA


Hello,
My name is Tal and I am a Sophomore at the Bergen County Academies.
I was a dancer in the recent production of EVITA, and also stage managed Our Town.
I wanted to thank you for the lovely pictures you shot as they are really amazing!!

Best,
Tal
Student, BCA AVPA


June 1, 2014
MacBeth

Ivan
Spectacular!

Many Thanks,
Rebecca

Dr. Rebecca Strum
Performing Arts Coordinator


March 4, 2014
Bat Boy

Ivan,
I just got a chance to look at your wonderful photos of Bat Boy. Spectacular! It looks like you have captured almost every moment!
Thank you again for your brilliant work and generous donation of your time.
Much Love,
Rebecca

Rebecca Strum, PhD
Performing Arts Coordinator
Bergen County Academies
Academy for Visual and Performing Arts


November 21, 2013
Antigone

Ivan,
I was finally able to give these gorgeous photos the time they deserve. WOW !
I love how you have arranged them — signature shots — a great idea!
Thank you, thank, you, thank you!
Rebecca


March 1, 2016

Alexandra Spyridaki / Facebook

The best guy around!! Thanks so much for capturing so many memories with such sensitivity and artistry!!