Fiddle Phenom: Maggie Neatherlin (view this story)

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Rep: 20
Will Yurman April 29, 2010, 12:21 p.m. permalink

A sweet story. The best part was Maggie - what a great subject. I thought the video had some wonderful moments but got bogged down and felt repetitive and long by the end. We're all guilty of falling in love with our material but I think at half the length this video would have been twice as good.
A couple of technical things - several of the audio interviews were only on a single channel. It created an odd affect hearing the music in both ears and the interview in only one.
Also some of the interviews sounded hissy, especially in the quiet moments - if you're recording using auto gain control, I would stop that if your gear allows.
Music was so key to this story and gave you all sorts of great audio possibilities. I wish the music had been cleaner in some parts of the video - maybe plugging directly into the sound board next time if you can?
My biggest complaint is that you had this wonderful character in Maggie and we hear so little from her. Maybe she wasn't a great interview?
There was a lot of process in the story - the teacher talking about technical issues, the background on Maggie getting started. But not nearly as much about Maggie as a person or why she plays, or why she plays this kind of music or even from the audience responding to a nine-year-old fiddle player. I loved the dad - he seemed genuinely thrilled by his daughter's success and skills, where I found the teacher too focused on the details.
I really like the moment you led in with her calling while the dad was talking about her - a nice use of audio leading us into a scene. And I loved the closing shot of Maggie - she's a cutie. I wish we had seen more tight shots of her.

Rep: 23
Brian Immel April 29, 2010, 2:23 p.m. permalink

I also was expecting to hear more from Maggie herself. I felt there was such a positive buildup from the people around her that I just kept waiting for the next sound bite to be from her everytime.

No doubt, it sure is hard to keep a consistent sound over months of work with multiple pieces of gear. There were a few single channel issues with the on camera mic and some transitions but overall nothing that couldn't be fixed with a few minutes of tweaking. As hard as amplified music is to capture I thought you did a great job mixing so many songs together.

But when it comes to the length I'm a bit torn. There are so many angles to this story - you did a nice job of scratching the surface. However I'm left with the feeling that either this should be a much longer piece with more detail, or one that doesn't expose me to every interesting story. Say, just the parents. I do understand the urge to show it all though.

Regardless, I felt very satisfied after watching it.

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