It’s not often that reality TV finds its way to Goshen, Indiana. Instead of waiting for that to happen, Hayley Kirkton and Rachel Mast are working on their own satirical take of a national phenomenon. The GC Bachelorette will be Goshen College’s very own rendition of ABC’s hit reality show “The Bachelorette.”In GC’s version, instead of actually trying to find love, Kirkton and Mast will poke fun at popular tropes and give a comedic take on competing for love on a national stage.
The project’s conception began when Kirkton, a senior social work major, came up with the idea and asked Mast, a junior sustainability major, what she thought. “On our shared Instagram account (@sillygirlygoshencollegememes), we decided to test the waters and see if that was something people would be interested in,” said Kirkton.
The votes came in, indicating that there was indeed interest. Soon, a Google form was sent out inviting students to nominate others they thought would make a good fit for the show.
For those who have never seen the show, it centers around a single person, the bachelorette, on her quest to find love. Contestants try to win over the bachelorette throughout the whole season. In each episode, some of the contestants are sent home until only one remains.
One would-be contestant, first-year Seth Smith Kauffman, turned from cast member to producer after his relationship status was no longer single. He, along with his fellow first-year and friend Tyson Miller, volunteered to do all of the filming and editing. “Without them, this one-hundred percent would have been shot on an iPhone and edited on iMovie,” said Mast.
The production turned out to be far from shot-on-iPhone: Miller said that he checked out “58 pieces of equipment from ITS, including multiple cameras, light kits, boom mics, clip mics and recorders.”
Kirkton commented, “The process of casting was harder than I would have thought — I reached out to everyone who was nominated, and a good amount of people said no.”
However, the pair was determined to get the show running. “Haley ended up also reaching out to a lot of our current contestants because she thought they would be a good fit,” said Mast.
Once casting was complete, the crew struggled to find a date that worked with everyone’s schedules, but eventually settled on a Saturday to begin filming.
“It’s tough to shoot,” said Miller. “Shooting with multiple cameras with much more of a live sort of feel is hard.” Luckily, thanks to the skilled planning of Miller and Smith Kauffman, the crew ended the day with around 150 gigabytes of footage — just for the first episode.
The massive amount of material does not daunt the two producers, though. “Editing will be annoying,” said Miller. “But I think between the two of us we’ll be able to make it manageable.”
Due to the nature of the show, the production crew has been trying their best to keep everything on the set confidential. All contestants are asked to not share any details involving the show. However, official cast releases have begun. One by one, Kirkton and Mast’s joint Instagram account will release contestant names.
Episodes are set to air later this semester. Due to the uncertainty of scheduling and difficulty finding time to edit, it is hard for the production crew to nail down the release date. “Episodes will likely drop at the end of April [or] early May,” commented Miller. “We want to have them all at least shot before we start releasing anything.”
With five episodes planned and lots left to film and edit, the crew is committed to seeing the project through. The student body eagerly awaits the end result.