Organizing with Markers (or Locators)

Using Markers, example 1In the wonderful world of Avid Media Composer, the editing software we are using for our documentary, there are these things called "locators" (or "markers" in the most recent software versions). In our attempts to organize the nearly 200 hours of footage we filmed during the 2011/2012 school year, we're using these markers to our advantage. Think of it as taking notes while watching a movie. As we watch, for example, a thirty-minute clip from String Orchestra class, we pause the playback to add a marker to indicate the action that is taking place. On average we add a marker every 5 to 30 seconds. We even have color coded our markers to help quickly find different actions.

Color-coded Marker GuideMost actions will be categorized as "reality" and marked blue. This includes Eric Jarboe, a main character in our documentary, (denoted in our markers as "EJ") opening the door to a classroom or talking to the class. When the camera is filming a student or group of students, we mark their action with a cyan colored marker. This will help us later on when we need to find footage of a particular student. "B-roll" is basically anything that is not "Reality"; it's footage than can be used in any scene at any time. For example, footage of a clock is considered "b-roll". We're also locating all the songs the orchestra plays, camera moves (i.e. pans, zooms, wide shots, etc), and production moments (i.e. Kelsy or Alburn).

Using Markers, example 2Interviews are typically transcribed, which means someone watches the interview and types everything word for word. So far, we've transcribed one interview with Eric Jarboe. However, our transcription isn't a word document. Instead, we again used markers. Red markers indicate the question or answer topic. Blue markers are the transcription of Eric's answer. His answers weren't always transcribed word for word and in these cases we use a blue marker but the text is all in caps.

Take a closer look at the example photos. These are just a small sampling of what we've been up to at Music Man headquarters the past five months, and what we'll continue to work on for a few more months to come. Cheers!



End of Prinicple Photography

After a year of filming in Indiana, co-producers Kelsy and Alburn packed everything up and moved back to Los Angeles, California. It was bittersweet having to say goodbye to the good people of Southern Indiana and the orchestra students that had inspired the filmmakers along the way. Now back in LA, the post production phase of the project has begun. This process will take twice as long as production did; the road ahead is long yet exciting.

The first six months will be spent watching the nearly 200 hours o f footage. This will require transcoding the media to 10:1m so it doesn't require hooking up four hard drives to view everything. Concerts and events, whereScreen grab of Avid Media Composer & the transcoding proccess more than one camera was used, will be synced and grouped so all of the angle s can be seen at once in real time. Going day by day, clips will be watched, notes taken about their contents, and then organized for accessibility.  
While moving through the footage, characters and stories will begin to develop. Hopefully, Kelsy and Alburn can watch it all in six months! Finally they'll choose the strongest stories and begin putting them together. 

For now, Music Man is in the unglamorous grunt work portion of the schedule. Once segments start to get built, some of them will be highlighted on to whet your appetites!  Thanks to all who have supported the making of this documentary and stay tuned!

Local Paper Covers Washington DC Trip

Click here to view article on Plain Dealer's website

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Undeterred by adversity, JCHS Orchestra forges a most memorable and positive trip

Tracy Eder

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Members of the Jennings County High School orchestra warm up before their performance at the Lincoln Memorial during their trip to Washington, DC. Pictured are, from left to right, Shania Simpson, Jacob Doty, Dakota Bishop, Harrison Randall, Caleb Smith, Cody Smith, Garret Smith (hidden) and Leann West. Not pictured is the crowd of tourists who gathered to watch and listen.—Submitted Photos
Eric Jarboe, leader of the JCHS Orchestra, left, shakes hands with CO4 Dennis Scott a resident of the Fairfax Veterans’ Retirement Home after the orchestra performed. Members of the orchestra agreed that their performance at the Fairfax was the most memorable event of their trip. CO4 Scott, who is originally from Brownstown, fondly remembers Charles Hurley and Don Pelkey, former administrators at JCHS.
The string orchestra of Jennings County High School, approximately 47 students in all, 30 chaperones and a small film crew, left the high school Wednesday, April 18 at 10 p.m. for the Cherry Blossom Festival that was taking place in Washington, D.C.

According to orchestra leader Eric Jarboe, "This trip had more adversity than any previous trip we have ever taken."

From the beginning of the trip when a bus broke down, to there being no cherries in bloom in the capital due to a warm March, until Jarboe himself ended up in an emergency room at a hospital, the trip proved a trying experience. But according to Jarboe, "The students all had great attitudes and came together as a musical unit in a very positive way."

When one of the two buses broke down at a West Virginia travel plaza on their way east, members of the orchestra had to wait for alternate transportation. What better way to kill time than to give an impromptu concert at a rest stop in the hills of West Virginia, entertaining other weary travelers?

"We had a lot of time on our hands and we got to know one another a lot more," says Leann West, a senior member of the orchestra.

"We bonded a lot like a family," agreed Tara Tucker, a freshman. Not only was it fun for the members of the local orchestra, those driving into the rest stop were in for quite a treat. "We even wrote our own songs and sang them," said West.

When it was determined the problem bus could not be immediately repaired, all of the orchestra members and a few of the chaperones boarded the first bus and headed on to Washington, D.C. The remaining chaperones rested in a hotel until yet another bus arrived from Illinois to haul them to the naton's capitol.

This unexpected delay cost the group about eight hours and forced the cancellation of several activities that had been planned. Undeterred, the group was still able to sight see quite a bit of Washington's famous venues, including the Vietnam War Memorial, Ford Theatre, Arlington National Cemetery and the Smithsonian.

The main purpose of the trip, though, was to perform. And perform they did! The orchestra held two concerts Friday, one at Quantico Marine Museum and the other at the Fairfax Veterans' Retirement Home. On Saturday, they performed at the Lincoln Memorial.

All of the students agreed that out of the three concerts, the highlight of their trip was performing for the residents at the Fairfax. Their concert consisted of songs for each branch of the military.

While they played each song, retired veterans of that particular branch stood and sang aloud. According to Amber Lovegrove, a member of the orchestra, "Many of the residents would cry when they sang their song. Then there we were crying right along with them."

Around midnight Saturday, was when Jarboe made his trip to the emergency room. Although he was released, the return trip took longer than originally anticipated due to the frequent required to keep their fearless leader comfortable. They arrived back at the high school at 2 a.m. and approximately half of the students were hearty enough to show up for school Monday morning.

Both Garret Smith and Kate Eastman simply summed up the trip in six words: "It was a lot of fun!"

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JCHS Orchestra to Participate in National Cherry Blossom Festival

Cherry Blossoms in DC

While in Washington DC, the Orchestra will get to perform as part of the centennial celebration of the National Cherry Blossom Festival!

This is a great honor and will make the trip even more memorable for the students. 


Park Theater advertises upcoming orchestra concert

While searching for images online, I stumbled across the website for the North Vernon Park Theater and the very nice front page spread advertising the upcoming Jennings County High School Orchestra Concert at the theater.