It’s been a few weeks since I last wrote about a new project that I have been working on. I thought I’d share the rest of the story behind making this.
When I was first asked to record a series of interviews for this project, the details were sketchy at best: (Teacher and students help find a holocaust hero, they write a play about her life, it has been shown all over the world. etc.). The Dean of our college would be conducting the interviews, so my job was to simply record a few head shots and get some clean audio. I don’t know that there was any future plan beyond that, other than this was a once in a life time chance to record their stories together and we didn’t want to miss it.
Within minutes of recording I knew that this would be no ordinary interview. The power of their experiences shone bright and everyone in the room was effected. What was even more amazing to me was that they had shared this story hundreds if not thousands of times already.
Once the interviews were done and I got the go ahead to turn these interviews into a short film, I did a lot of researching and contacting to find photos and images of the story they were telling. Fortunately Norms group already had a great collection of photos from their years of visiting with Irena in Poland. What I didn’t have though, was photos or images from the Warsaw ghetto. After a few hours of research on the web, I came across an incredible photo collection from a website/ group called “Yad Vashem”. Their group has one of the largest media libraries of holocaust related items in the world.
Amazingly I was able to correspond with them through email, and within three days had several high resolution photos I could use for the documentary. As Norm says at the beginning of the film, some things are meant to be.
Besides adding the visuals, I turned to another great collection of soundtracks from Dan Phillipson, Emmett Cooke, and others. I have been on a piano kick for a few my recent projects and particularly like the subtleness of Dan’s work. Please check out more of his music at http://www.premiumbeat.com.
In summary, this is not the most artistic piece I have ever worked on, but one I am very proud of regardless. The editing part of this showed me the value of “less is more” and the importance of getting out of the way and letting the story tell it’s self.