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News > Success stories > A tale of lessons and lemons

A tale of lessons and lemons

SAVANNA CRASTO (Class of 2017) is the type of person who learns by 'doing'.
28 Jun 2023
Written by Paris Faint
Success stories
Savanna Crasto and Headmaster Patrick Wallas at the Chasing Lemons premiere
Savanna Crasto and Headmaster Patrick Wallas at the Chasing Lemons premiere

As a fresh graduate from All Saints, Savanna pursued tertiary studies in business and psychology at the University of Queensland.

She also tested out a few side hustles during this time; not quite knowing where the winds of opportunity or passion would take her.

When Savanna returned to All Saints in 2018 to co-direct Adam, the Senior School’s entry for the Gold Coast Drama Festival, something clicked.

“That really started to solidify that I wanted to get into the creative industry; it was an awesome opportunity to direct that play and work with Mr Cherry,” she says.

Fast forward another year and Savanna had explored a few more university courses and lived overseas for six months in Denmark before returning home.

At the Queensland University of Technology, she discovered the world of film and TV.

After a year of learning the ropes there, Savanna put her studies on hold to direct, produce and star in her first feature film Tender Napalm.

“The first time that I really thought that the film industry is where I want to be, where I wanted to give everything, was while doing that first film,” she says.

“We shot the film across two nights with just a crew of two people – myself and another actor – and after it premiered at Event Cinemas I just felt a different kind of fulfilment, I was very calm and very grounded.”

Now working on the sixth film under her own production company The Colour Series, it might be safe to say Savanna has transcended the classroom for good.

The Colour Series films that have been released in the past year include The Psychology of Beauty and Chasing Lemons, which have collectively earned several accolades including International Manhattan Film, Boston Independent and Cannes Indies Cinema Awards.

Photo: Scene from Chasing Lemons starring and directed by Savanna Crasto

Savanna’s latest premiere Chasing Lemons was attended by many friends of the All Saints community including Headmaster Patrick Wallas.

She explains that, following the success of Tender Napalm and The Psychology of Beauty, there were more than 1,000 actors who auditioned to be a part of Chasing Lemons.

“We were very lucky to find a really great cast and then it was a four-month process of pre-production and rehearsals, and then we filmed in August last year,” says Savanna.

“The reception has been really great and has built momentum into the next film Love and Lemon Trees – the hype and the culture of people now wanting to be a part of that project has been incredible.”

Each of Savanna’s films to date has been inspired by different ideas and associated emotions within the realm of colour psychology.

The upcoming film Love and Lemon Trees continues this tradition and centres on the grieving process that follows a significant loss.

“It asks the question ‘how does this generation actually deal with grief?’, based on the idea of when we aren’t able to hide behind an Instagram post or sit in the life that we portray on social media,” Savanna explains.

As Savanna looks forward to the upcoming release, she reflects with fondness on her time at All Saints.

She says her education inspired her love for the creative arts and imparted upon her the meaning of being a good person.

“I think the biggest thing that I took away from my time at school was learning the value and importance of making people feel like they have a place in this world,” says Savanna.

“Something I really learned from All Saints, and more specifically from Mr Wallas, is how we treat people matters.”

“It's the reason that I started this production company because I don't just want to be a cog in the wheel within the film industry. I want to be an active participant in shaping it.”

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