Get the Promonews daily round up

User Accounts

Get the Promonews daily round up

Sharon Van Etten 'Seventeen' by Maureen Towey

Promo News - 29th Jan 2019

Sharon Van Etten's new video comes across like a blast from the past, and part of the grand tradition of New Jersey rock n roll.

It's a very cool video with an old-school sensibility, shot on Super 16mm, directed by Maureen Towey and featuring Van Etten with Rachel Trachtenburg as the putative subject of her song Seventeen. She is, of course, also Van Etten's younger self, or alter-ego. And you can feel the bond between them.


"Sharon started by giving me a deck with a list of meaningful New York and New Jersey locations. Places that had nurtured her, even if they have since disappeared. We expanded her idea to include a younger version of Sharon. We were lucky to find Rachel Trachtenburg, a musician in her own right, who captured Sharon's spirit so well. They were both so game to climb through rat-filled parking lots and scream on ladders in the rain.

"When we scouted the water shot at the Round Valley Reservoir, it was a beautiful sunny day... but when we were actually shooting, it was pouring down rain, so we were only able to get one or two takes of each shot. It brought a wonderful, moody urgency to the images. I'm just so glad that Sharon and Rachel were so game!

"I was eight months pregnant when we were shooting and editing this piece so I am very grateful to have such a generous team of collaborators. They trusted me throughout and proved that a very pregnant lady can still lead!"


"I see the video as an iconic throwback to New York City at the end of the 20th century. Shot on film, processed, scanned and converted to digital video, the files we received from Kodak were scanned and transferred at full gate, which had to be resized to 16x9 in Adobe Premiere.

"No VFX were used in this video. However, the full gate frame had a very retro, graphic look that I loved. I experimented with using it to create a sort of 'picture book' feel during the first chorus, where portraits of Sharon are revealed in front of various locations from her time growing up as an artist in the city. I left them in the first rough cut for Maureen. She liked it, and the full scan frames stayed."

Promo News - 29th Jan 2019


  • Director's notes
  • New Director

Popular content


Problem with this page? Let us know



Maureen Towey
Miranda Kahn
Executive Producer
Aaron Dean Eisenberg, Zeke Hutchins, Kraegan Graves
1st AD
Laura Klein


Director of Photography
Frances Chen
Director of Photography
Charlotte Hornsby
Focus Puller
Marcus Odom
2nd AC
Mike Gialloreto


Jesse Ruutilla


Livio Sanchez
Editing company
Cutters Studios


Rob Sciarratta
Grading company
SIM Studios


Post production company
Cutters Studios
Post Producer
Stephanie Rose


Jagjaguwar Records

Other credits

Sound Consultant

Dave Rosenberg

Cutters Studios Executive Producer

Elizabeth Krajewski

Cutters Studios Assistant Editor

Katie Traurig

Film Lab

Kodak Film Lab New York

Camera Rental Houses

John Kopec, Du-All Camera

Promo News - 29th Jan 2019

Related Content

Industry News

Promonews logo

Music video creativity everyday.
Submit your video