Sasha Mattock is a Jumblies and Offshoots intern from England. As a percussionist, Sasha was a very welcome addition to the creative team involved in Arts4All’s recent production, Spooky Stories…Strangely Told. Sasha worked with Rebecca Bruton to develop and perform music for the piece, and helped animate some of the stories by creating live sound effects. Here is her recap of the evening.
It was great being thrown straight into this project one month ago, meeting both the Artists and the Participants at the same time as well as getting to grips with how the performance was going to be put together. Seeing the written words go to a performance piece in 6 hours over three weeks was amazing, especially as we then had to be rescheduled due to the winds of Hurricane Sandy!
Creating a song with Rebecca was a lot of fun and it was great to learn some techniques for song writing, it has given me motivation to write a few songs/poems myself about my time spent in Canada. We also worked on another snippet of music which had many uses our performance, it came from Emanuel’s story which was told a at the beginning of the piece, we then took this melody and used it as transition music when travelling between the tents …’January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December.
Our performance started sitting round a camp fire with Emanuel’s melody drifting through the audience while he made his entrance. It felt warm and cosy sitting in front of a fire listening to Emanuel’s story. The music then kicked in as the audience was moved to The Shadow Players tent with Shadowy Kit and her gang. We heard about the fear of falling in dreams, the ghost who controlled the wine bottles and of course those scary monster exercising noises that one hears all the time. The tour then continued coming across the monstrous sight of Liz exercising on her running machine and to the tent with a library and the overdue ghost Diana, the spooky stair case and the poor girl who suffered one traumatic swim – 7 leaches attached to her leg, a fish bite and glass in her foot. Igor was the next act with his chickens (of course they were just Halloween costumes!). In the final tent we had the luxury of eating Iole’s baked potatoes while hearing about the ghost in the basement and the unlucky person who banged his head with a cymbal crash in his excitement.
The performance ended as it began with the audience moving back to the camp fire to sing the closing song ‘The Dark Hollow’. It was lovely having everyone join in, some reading out lines of the verses and others just singing and even the chorus. There was no better way to spend the evening!