Soundtrack

01Dec09

The whole premise for the soundtrack is the theory that it’s 80% HOW you actually say something and 20% WHAT you actually say. To realise this we recorded 4 recordings featuring two different versions of the transcript. The first is matter of fact and the second adds elements of a fairy tale story into the narrative. Both are transcribed.

1. No inflection – Version one (the matter of fact version) was read with no inflection in the voice, no tonal variance either high or low, no accent on any word, just a monotone reading to inspire little emotion.

I didn’t think that it worked  so we moved onto;

2. Inflection but in the wrong places –  Version one was read with tonal variance and a good upbeat pace to better communicate the idea of the narrated children’s story. However the emphasis was not always in the right place which seemed to work so we moved onto;

3. Inflection in the wrong places – Version 2 was read with special attention paid to the negative words. These were read in an upbeat way of awe and wonder. This style worked very well but the transcript (making it actually a fairy tale) was overkill and I decided to stick to version one.

4. This was recorded in the same way as the previous attempt but I decided to introduce a difference in tone when it came to the dialogue between the mother and daughter. The daughter was to be accurately narrated with some emotional gravatas. This would provide a nice contrast between the reality of the situation for others (the family)and the viewpoint from the sufferer. I think that this adds another layer to the concept though and I’m still working out if the piece can handle it.   

In order to incorporate this extra layer I might have to rethink the imagery I use. Anyhow here are the two versions.

     ________________________________

Karen as it is

 Karen was all smiles as she signed the rental agreement. The decision was freeing and empowering, and she could not wait to get home to tell her husband of twenty years that she was no longer prepared to put up with his nonsense. What did I do this time? She could already hear him saying in that irritating voice he used when he wanted her to know that he was just trying to placate her. Maybe this time she would not talk to him at all, she would just take her daughter, pack her bags and leave a note on the refrigerator door. Karen pulled into her driveway and took a deep breath. She pulled the bottle of whisky out from the glove compartment and contemplated it for a few moments. She was having a good day today; maybe she did not need the alcohol. Then again, her mood was likely to fall apart any moment. She was, after all, about to move out of her home of two decades. She unscrewed the top, and slowly swallowed a bit of her potent medicine. She closed the bottle and got out of the car.

She found her sixteen year-old daughter huddled over her calculus homework in her bedroom. For a moment Karen felt overwhelmed with doubt, not wanting to shatter her daughter’s simple life over this insanity. But it was too late now, the decision had been made and the contract signed.

“Annie, honey…” Karen started, and then stopped, taken aback by the sharp look on her daughter’s face.

“What is it mom. I know that you’ve gone and done something again. I heard you arguing with dad this morning. What were you fighting about anyway?” Annie asked accusingly. The truth was, Karen did not remember how the fight had started, she only knew that she had woken up angry and everything had gone downhill from there.

 “Mom, whatever it is, it is a bad idea,” Annie continued, “Remember what happened last time.” She turned her back to Karen and returned to her homework.

Karen remembered what had happened last time. Last time she had fought with her husband she had decided that she needed a break, and had taken a significant chunk of their daughter’s college fund to purchase a ticket on an extravagant one month cruise in the Mediterranean. She had flown to New York to meet the group, but never boarded the ship. It had suddenly seemed like a petty solution to a problem that was not so big after all. She had returned home in tears, apologizing to her husband and daughter for her brief disappearance. They had forgiven her. They were good people, she was lucky. She doubted that most other men would have stuck around through such tumultuous mood swings.

Suddenly Karen realized that moving out was a terrible idea. She loved her husband and had no intention of leaving him. But what was she going to do with the contract she had already signed? She sat down on a stool in the kitchen and began crying. Why was she like this? Why, at 55, had she not yet learned to hold down a job? Why couldn’t she get through a day without secretly guzzling down alcohol? Why couldn’t she be a steady trustworthy wife and mother? Karen decided that it was time to get some help.

 Karen as a fairy tale

 Princess Karen was all smiles as held the golden pen and signed the scroll for her new rental agreement. The decision was freeing and empowering, and she could not wait to get back to the palace and tell Prince Charming, her loving husband of twenty years, that she was no longer prepared to put up with his nonsense.

“What is it this time darling?” She could already hear him ask in that gruff voice that he used when he wanted her to know that he was trying to placate her. Maybe this time she would not talk to him at all, she would just take her beautiful daughter, pack her bags with all of her favourite things and leave a short note on the refrigerator door.

Princess Karen pulled up to the drawbridge and took a long deep breath of fresh air. She pulled the gleaming bottle of magical whisky out from the glove compartment and contemplated it for a few moments. She was having a pleasant day today; maybe she did not need the potent alcohol. Then again, her mood was likely to fall apart any moment. She was, after all, about to move out of the kingdom, her home of two decades. She unscrewed the top, and slowly swallowed a bit of the marvellous medicine. She closed the bottle and got out of her carriage.

She found her sixteen year-old daughter huddled over her alchemy homework in her bedroom. For a moment Princess Karen felt overwhelmed with doubt, not wanting to shatter her daughter’s simple life over this insanity. But it was too late now, the decision had been made and the contract signed.

“Annie, honey…” Princess Karen started, and then stopped, taken aback by the sharp look on her daughter’s face.

“What is it mu mah? I know that you’ve gone and done something again. I heard you arguing with pap pah this morning. What were you fighting about anyway?” Annie asked accusingly. The truth was, Princess Karen did not remember how the fight had started, she only knew that she had woken up angry and everything had gone downhill from there.

 “Mu mah, whatever it is, it is a bad idea,” Annie continued, “Remember what happened last time.” She turned her back to her mother and returned to her homework.

Princess Karen remembered what had happened last time. Last time she had fought with the prince she had decided that she needed a break, and had taken a significant chunk out their daughter’s golden coin dowry to purchase a ticket on an extravagant one month cruise in the Mediterranean. She had flown to New York to meet the group, but never boarded the ship. It had suddenly seemed like a petty solution to a problem that was not so big after all. She had returned home in tears, apologizing to her husband and daughter for her brief disappearance. They had forgiven her. They were good people, she was lucky. She doubted that most other Princes would have stuck around through such tumultuous mood swings.

Suddenly Princess Karen realized that moving out of the palace was a terrible idea. She loved Prince Charming and had no intention of leaving him or the kingdom. But what was she going to do with the contract she had already signed? She sat down on a toadstool in the kitchen and began crying. Why was she like this? Why, at 55, had she not yet learned to hold down a job? Why couldn’t she get through a day without secretly guzzling down alcohol? Why couldn’t she be a steady trustworthy wife and mother? Princess Karen decided that it was time to pay a visit to the fairy God mother.

 

 

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