My First Stab at Directing a Music Video

"... Promised if one of us left or died, we'd meet again in another life."

                                                                                     -Jill Sobule, The Resistance Song

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So... as the release date for my Americana/Rock band's "Dig In" cd grew closer and several long awaited creative projects really kicked into gear, my mind went back to that one special night when I started dreaming about The Resistance Song. I kept thinking about strands of lyrics and story elements, and how I could use child actors... My youngest daughter Harmony was seriously involved in acting classes, not to become an actress... no, her intention was just to become better at speaking to a group. (At first, she'd been excited about all the possibilities of acting, but once I found out about how she could do commercials... she didn't want to go that route. Any-waaay, I digress.) The vision continued. Harmony and her friends, my friends' children (and other children I hadn't even met yet) appeared in my musings - painting each other's faces, trying on different characters and play-fighting in my side yard - and the video just kept on rolling through my mind like projector film. I put out a call for young actors.  Surprisingly enough, I received just the right number! And they were all wonderful, unique individuals, spirited, funny, eager, and easy to talk to. They were so excited and ready to listen. I could not believe it-- I was actually directing a video with kids! I know I could never have been able to do that if I had not spent tons of time with my friend Tricia McLean and her StarPatch Players. I watched her direct and teach, and even participated in some of her projects. She was always so good with the kids and they loved her. (Digressing again, I know, but sometimes back stories are fun.)

So, before the big day came, there was a day of buying props and floating ideas with my videographer (she so versatile!) Melody. What a day that was! Melody could hardly believe that by the time she got to the set (my 3-acre yard) I had actually pulled together a nice diverse group of fantastic kids. (There was additional help from some very gracious parents.) And Tricia was right-- getting that initial creative chaos swirling was fun! At the party store I bought hats, helmets, mustaches, fake blood, swords, water guns, feather boas-- all with French resistance clash and skirmish playing out in my head. But, with the children, it all turned into more of a coming of age story... where they are fighting for their independence from each other, and going through stages and transition in life. That was what the visions turned into. Not just what Solbule's song says about the French Resistance during the Nazi occupation, or about her own life in the American workforce during the 1990's... but what I visualized about how children would resist. I guess being a mother of 2 girls and therefore experiencing a LOT of resistance (lol!!)... perhaps that was an element lurking behind the whole thing! After all, both of my daughters are in it...

My oldest daughter has started college now, and all my child actors have grown older and taller. But hearing about the release date of "their video" brings those mischievous sprites back, peering from behind their notebooks. And looking at the still photos now brings it ALL back! We had tons of fun that day, and my vision involved the reality that I'm having a dream about The Resistance Song, and that children are in my dream acting out their resistance... or maybe the resistance is something the dreamer is feeling. It seems ethereal to me now, but you'll see when you watch the video...  and then maybe you'll tell me about YOUR visions.

I'd love to hear your dreams, and your stories of resistance.