I pursued some hometown Bethlehem Recreation summer gigs this spring and here’s the first with the City of Bethlehem. I have two gigs, each with a unique situation.
I was the opener for a ‘movie under the stars’ situation. I was to open for some animated Disney superhero film (Jack Frost, actually). As the city crew inflated this impressive movie screen in an urban park, I set up off to the side to play/engage smaller groups of kids before the show. I ditched the sound system idea and decided to go the acoustic, farmers’ market approach I’ve been doing recently. (It’s way cool not to set up a PA system……)
Early on, it was way cool, on this sub-atomic scale, though. I connected with several kids and adults on a very personal level. Kids from the local school who know me from school assemblies (one paid, one bartered), moms with very young (and wonderfully impressionable…. again, I get to see the reactions…) toddlers and infants in strollers.
As the night developed, I also got to experience screen addiction, our invasive TV culture and the subsequent mutation of these performing folk arts. I became the sound track for kids playing on the swings, families establishing territory for the film, and a part of this white noise, sound track of existence.
Disturbing. …but I’ll get paid to be part of it.