I love making community films. There’s something about capturing real people doing genuine things that strikes a chord with me. When I recently set out to make three new web films for a community orchestra in Southend, I decided to let the music do the talking.
A short session of habitual screen swiping and comment scouring and it’s easy to think the world has been doomed by politicians and unrelenting narcissists. Modern-day media drip feeds propaganda and negativity like an acid tap with an annoying leak. But it’s equally easy to forget that thousands of good people are out there doing positive things – making an effort to grow, learn, share and support others. Most of the time, those people aren’t shouting about it on the internet.
In my latest series of short films produced for the Yardarm Folk Orchestra, I worked alone capturing fly-on-the-wall style footage during several public performances and also a members’ workshop. My intention was to represent the diverse cross-section of amateur musicians who come together from all walks of life to form the Yardarm Folk Orchestra; to learn, perform and grow. More importantly, I wanted to capture how it feels to be part of a community orchestra that encourages its members to share knowledge, make new friends, and use their musical skills to raise money for important causes in Southend, Essex and Kent.
The finished films have been made to feature on the client’s website and social media. You won’t find any glamourous edits, AI-enhanced trickery, viral hooks or corny corporate soundbites here; instead, these films simply aim to portray the true atmosphere, enjoyment and camaraderie in a truthful way.
Three short films: Performing, Learning and Socialising are now available to view at www.yardarmfolkorchestra.co.uk which is a site I also design and maintain for the charity. Please get in touch if you would like to find out more about commissioning similar short-form documentaries and business promos of your own.