uOttawa students’ Backstreet Boys parody video screened on Jumbotron during Ottawa Senators game

A high-school talent show started it all for fourth-year communications major Alex Martel and for Faculty of Science alumnus François Thériault. During the show, Martel and Thériault performed in a tongue-in-cheek French “cover” band for the Backstreet Boys.

The humorous homage to the vocal group eventually led Martel and Thériault, who are devout Ottawa Senators fans, to create their first Sens-Backstreet Boys parody video in 2011, to the song Quit Playing Games With My Heart : it’s about the angst of two diehard fans during the Sens’ woeful 2010-11 campaign.

“The Sens were having a really bad season that year. After another bad loss, I remember getting a text from François saying: ‘Quit playing games with my heart: Sens lost video,’” says Martel. A couple of months later, the clip was not only shared with family and friends, but also shown at an Ottawa Senators staff meeting at ScotiaBank Place. “It got good reviews, so we ended up making another video this year because we wanted to try to get it played on the Jumbotron at a Sens game,” adds Martel.

On February 25, 2012, their goal came true: Martel and Thériault’s second instalment, As Long As You Love Me, made it onto the Jumbotron during a Sens- Boston Bruins match-up and now has over 6,000 hits on YouTube.
For Martel, as a uOttawa communications student, producing videos aligns well with his field of studies, and he’s quick to recognize the expertise and influence of two uOttawa communications professors who’ve stood out for him so far.

“Professor Luc Dupont has got it and he knows his stuff, which makes him really interesting to listen to,” says Martel. The other stand out is Philippe Ross. “He’s down to earth, connects with students (…) by throwing discussions out there and communicating his knowledge that way.”

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