Monday, August 25, 2008

Music: Rites and Rights

Many thanks to those of you who, prompted by my email reminders, manage to navigate to this site, and take time to view the postage-stamp-sized videos I post here. I am proud to announce that INCIDENT AT CHEKHOV CREEK has been accepted in another film festival - Poppy Jasper in California - and will screen there more or less in life-size!

Acquiring permission to use some of the wonderful music that inspires me to make dances or dance videos can be a labyrinthine process at times. For CHEKHOV, for example, a number of different licenses were required for a number of different composers, music publishers and performers - and then only for "festival use."

Above is a picture of the live event we presented in June creekside at the Gaga Arts Festival - oh, those days were hot! - performed and videotaped in silence. Halfway through editing the footage, I decided to begin searching for music. Violinist/composer Andy Teirstein had allowed me to use his music before, and I had a hunch he might have written something that might suit what was evolving. Via email - he was traveling with the Woody Guthrie show - Andy said I could download his MANAHATTA from CD Baby and see what fit.

Amazingly, I discovered music that could have been composed for the video dance that was taking shape in response to this new layer of inspiration. A few emails later, artist-to-artist, with no legal department negotiating, we agreed on a fee. Some weeks later, Andy and family returned from their travels to find a DVD of the 8-minute opus in the mail. His response warmed my heart:

"Just wanted to let you know, we have been insanely nomadic, and I have only just now had a chance to view the film....actually we were on a little island in the middle of Lake George with friends and we all sat around a campfire and watched it on my laptop. So the sound was a little distant and flooded with crickets and tree frogs, but everyone loved it. Truly. What a treat to have my music just magically accompany those marvelous images. If there's an update of course I would love to have it. In fact, if it's not too much trouble maybe you could send two? This way I can keep one safe and unscratched at home and play the other for my choreography students.

For more about Andy Teirstein and his music, go to:
And now - without crickets and tree frogs - here is the fruit of our long-distance "collaboration":