Stories

August 9, 2020 - Hurdy Gurdy World

 

(Clown Girl World’s Greatest Act Series, Part II, March, 2020.   Arrived during isolation.   ‘Hurdy Gurdy Man’ song by Donovan, 1968.)

 

August 7, 2020 - The Red Hand Files

 

 

Something beautiful on the internet here at The Red Hand FilesNick Cave answers fans questions.   ‘What is shyness?”.  “How long will I be alone?”  “How do you stop fearing the end of the world?”  “What are your plans for the Corona pandemic?”

Nick Cave: “We all needed to draw ourselves back to a state of wonder.  My way was to write myself there … but I also realised that I was not alone in my grief and that many of you were, in one way or another, suffering your own sorrows, your own griefs.  I felt this in our live performances.  I felt very acutely that a sense of suffering was the connective tissue that held us all together.”    Like postcards from an old friend, the letters on The Red Hand Files invite us to pause, look up and savour life.

 

One More Time With Feeling documentary.

 

August 5, 2020 - ‘Boots’ The Clown – Out of Isolation

 

 

‘Boots’ the Clown was a worrier (underneath).  Boots worried about all the troubles right around the world.  Boots worried that it was getting harder and harder for those struggling to be heard or seen amidst the din of selling,  frenzy of buying and glare of celebrity.

 

 

 

‘Boots’ worried endlessly about the children.  The fires.  The trees.  The animals.  The ocean.   The air.   And that one day, everything would be lost.  All of these worries seemed impossible to do anything about.  Until, one strange day, the curtain went up.

 

Time stopped.  Something was in the air that changed everything.  People began to see each other again.  Help each other again.  Speak to their neighbours.  Wave to strangers.  Smile at each other through windows.  The world was warming – but this time, in a good way.

 

 

 

What felt impossible yesterday—now felt so much closer to possible.  And with new things to worry about, the old worries suddenly took a back seat.

 

But ‘Boots’ wasn’t worried that those things were being neglected.   ‘Boots’ could see that the solution to many of the old worries was on its way through the changes the world was making to solve the new worry.

 

And so, through the urgency and seriousness of the new worry, for the very first time, the whole world united.  Everyone was finally waking up.  A new way had to be seen.  The music could now being heard.   The crowd were singing together.  And this time, they were not so out of tune.

(‘Boots – Clown Girl, The World’s Greatest Act Series, March, 2020)

 

(Boots on the street.)

July 28, 2020 - Melbourne Street Musician

 

Photography Julian Kingma.

 

 

Natalie Trayling’s story is one of triumph over tragedy – and the power of music to hold and change lives.   (Found in Weekend Australian Magazine).

Not owning a piano, Natalie would go into the David Jones store in Melbourne city.  For years she was a fixture there.  But few knew that each night, Natalie disappeared onto the streets, often sleeping in parks and gardens, until dawn when David Jones store opened for her to play again.

A Mother of four children,  Natalie’s daughter Kerin was killed in a car accident outside the family home when she was just six years old.  Her youngest child Nathan, a promising junior sportsman, suffered depression and was diagnosed with schizophrenia.  Her second daughter, Jo-Ann, died from cystic fibrosis.  In a final, cruel blow, the family home they’d all once happily shared burnt to the ground.  For the past two decades Natalie has chosen to live and share her life’s work on the streets of Melbourne, for no money and no fanfare.  (Natalie is originally from Perth,Western Australia and graduated from Santa Maria College with a diploma of music at the age of 17. )  See article by Sue Sethurst,  here.  Her son Matthew has recorded her music here.

June 17, 2020 - Gigantic Change

Extinction Rebellion – The Gigantic Change from Passion Animation Studios on Vimeo.

June 16, 2020 - Clown Girl – Roll Up, Roll Up

 

 

Footnote:  Boots arrived (during the pandemic isolation in March, 2020).  In the early stage of the drawing, Boots was leaning against the globe, ground to a halt.  But as the drawing progressed, the continents became stars.  The biggest, falling right on top of Boot’s head.  Stuck, she became in the –  ‘in-between’.

But this was not to be the end – of the drawing.  Of the world.  Boots raised a hand, cautiously turning back a corner of the fallen star.   And there, right alongside her, a faintly glowing object of mystery, rolled up, rolled up.

Was it a ball for juggling?  Mirroring a juggled conscience?  Dropped or forgotten?  Left behind or gone astray?  Or maybe it was that small thing that so easily gets lost or overlooked?  Still there.  Still waiting.  Perhaps something new?  A gift.  Small and precious.  A reminder that there are things that need much greater care that we ever imagine — and quite often forget.  Until something rolls up, rolls up…

(‘Boots – The Clown, The World’s Greatest Act, Part I’, out of isolation March 2020)