Frequently Asked Questions

Our goal is to make your personal video biography experience as fun, informative and carefree as possible. It is a lasting family gift.


• Why not do it myself?

• Certainly, anyone with a video camera or, heaven forbid, a smart phone, can record an interview, but then what? Objectivity, audio and video quality, lighting, and time are all important facets. However, if you do choose to do it yourself, we encourage you to make a plan, schedule the time, and by all means, do it now. Better yet, give us a call.


•  Why choose Rara Avis Legacy Video?

• We have been working in the television industry for a very long time ... decades, in fact. We have the experience, the right tools, and the knowledge to obtain the highest quality sound and video. Most importantly, we tell compelling stories. We will sculpt the edited interview and add video, photographs, music, and/or graphic elements to craft a captivating show that you will enjoy watching again and again.


• Where do you conduct the interview?

• Most interviews are conducted in a quiet room in the subject’s home. We want the subject to be as relaxed and comfortable as possible. On occasion, we can record an interview over the phone to provide a narrative underlying photos and film. However, it is always our preference to conduct a videotaped interview because the end result is so much more compelling.


• How long does the interview take?

• The set-up (two cameras, lighting, and sound) takes approximately one hour. The interview can run from several hours to several days, depending upon the plan chosen, and the desired program length. Our longest interview to-date, resulted in nineteen hours of footage, shot over the course of three days (plus an additional six hours of video shot over the course of two more days to capture photos, mementos, and film). We want you to be one hundred percent happy with the finished program, so we discuss this at some length beforehand.


•What should I wear?

•We recommend avoiding white fabrics and those that have tight lines or patterns. Soft pastels are most pleasing.


• What video format do you shoot on?

• We employ one to three professional digital video cameras that record High Definition (HD) video with a 16x9 aspect ratio at 24 fps. Other formats are available.


• How long does it take to get the finished program?

• We strive to complete the editing as soon as possible. Typically, the shorter programs can be completed in about two weeks. Longer programs, especially those with extensive graphics, music, film, photos, etc. may take six to eight weeks to complete. The finished program can be on a DVD or available on-line depending upon your preference.


• Can you use my favorite music in the background?

• Sadly no, unless it is in the public domain, because of copyright issues. Although it is sometimes possible to get the necessary licensing, the time and expense is prohibitively high. We have several great music libraries with thousands of selections from which to draw, and in some instances, we will create original scores.


• What questions will you ask?

• The questions, and the detailed follow-up questions, will vary depending upon the plan and finished program length. We will ask about your parents, grandparents, and family that preceded you and then trace your life history: childhood, schools, relationships, children, travel, work experiences, life’s challenges, significant historical moments, politics, religion, etc. We will paint as complete a biographical tableau as time allows.


• Can I see the questions before the interview?

• Yes, although we strongly recommend against it. We strive to make our interviews conversational and find that most individuals will try and prepare if given the questions beforehand. This often results in frustration when the individual cannot recall the exact words that were prepared. We do not ask trick questions and the only “right” answers are the ones that you choose to give.


• What if I say something that I decide I do not want in the program?

• You have absolute editorial control. If there is anything that you would not like in the finished program, simply say so at the time of the interview or after you have seen the approval copy. Interviews that are spontaneous and lack a high degree of self-censorship are the most engaging.


• What about confidentiality?

• Your words, image, photos, and films are absolutely confidential. We may, with prior permission, use an excerpt of your production in our marketing efforts.


• What if my DVD is lost or damaged?

• We archive our productions and would be happy to send you an

additional copy for a small fee.


• How far will you travel?

• Projects have taken us all over the country and overseas.


• Your satisfaction?

• We can boast having 100% client satisfaction and we aim to keep it that way.


• How much is it going to cost?

• We have plans that will fit in nearly every family’s budget, from $100’s to many $1000’s. We strive to insure that every family will have access to the hopes, dreams, aspirations and life story of their loved-one(s). It’s important!

Call Today