Student wins tobyMac music video contest

A music video produced by Vaughn Donahue, a Northwestern College senior communication studies major from Monmouth, Maine, has won a tobyMac video contest and will be shown before the Christian artist’s performance at the Creation Northwest music festival in George, Wash., on July 28.

Donahue won an all-expenses-paid trip to the festival, including a backstage pass and the opportunity to sit on stage when tobyMac performs.

Donahue learned about the contest less than a week before its June 4 deadline, so he shot and edited the video during the course of four days. The video is for “Boomin’” from tobyMac’s “Portable Sounds” CD, a song that invites others to join in the adventure of following and praising Jesus. Shot at various sites in Orange City, including near De Koffie Boon, at the Orange City Elementary School playground and in Northwestern’s England Proscenium Theatre, Donahue’s video depicts a young man inviting people to a party.

The video features Donnel Eaddy, a Northwestern sophomore from New York City, along with Dr. Keith Allen, professor emeritus of theatre, and his wife, Marabel. Several Northwestern students, alumni and area residents also have roles.

Donahue says he chose to shoot “Boomin’” out of three possibilities because it’s a high-energy song that was easy to visualize under tight time constraints. He also thought the song was the most conducive to visually portraying tobyMac’s style as an artist, one of the guidelines of the video contest.

TobyMac and three music industry representatives selected nine semifinalists from the submitted videos. Each of the nine was placed on for a week of voting. The four videos that received the most votes were then named finalists, and tobyMac’s panel selected the ultimate winner.

Donahue, a longtime fan of DC Talk, the group that tobyMac performed in from 1989 to 2000, says he’s looking forward to meeting the Grammy Award-winning musician at Creation Northwest. He also is hopeful the experience may open some doors for future opportunities.

“Thousands of people are going to watch the video,” he says. “There’s always the potential it could lead to other jobs.”

Donahue has produced several videos that have been used at Northwestern to promote the RUSH student dance concert and NC/DC Extreme contest. He also served as a production assistant during the shooting of “The Prairie Pirates,” which was written and directed by Northwestern professor Jamey Durham, and as first assistant director for “Dave’s 16th,” a comedy written and directed by Orange City resident Michael Anderson.

Donahue’s video can be seen by going to