Aanii! Wapikoni's second stopover in Wikwemikong got off to a flying start, with three projects already at production stage, and four more almost done with pre-production! As soon as we had set up the mobile studio – we're at the Ball Park this year – some familiar faces came down to greet us, namely last year's participants: Brandon, Alex, Elliott, etc. They are more motivated than ever to undertake new film projects, and their previous films clearly have inspired others to take part in the Wapikoni experience, as we have many new participants interested in directing their own short film or simply learning how to operate the camera and sound equipment. Alex is giving us a hand with camera training, and Elliott helps us with our ever popular sound studio.
Many local singers and songwriters have come already to record their original material, and we keep being amazed at the amount and level of talent this community possesses. One of those musicians, Nimkeehns, approached us with an idea for a music video for their catchy rock song, Krazy Lately. He mobilized his band around a concept, and already has half the footage recorded. All this in a couple of days. Good job Nimkeehns!
We also met with Debbie, who is now directing a film about her parents and how the culture and the language have managed to survive over the years. Another new participant, Kyle, is following the Amikook Elders Centre during their week long class on ash tree basket weaving. The film will show the steps from collecting the ash tree to the weaving of intricate baskets. Kyle's mother, Kim, has invited a teacher from Michigan to pass on her knowledge, and according to her, the Ancestors recognize the motions of basket weaving, and must have been proud to see that the traditions are still strong in Wikwemikong.
More projects are on the way and still at the pre-production stage. Hailey is planning a film about the medicinal herbs, Curtis and Elliott want to make a documentary on youth initiative and involvement in arts, and Brandon is writing his second film with Wapikoni, about the passage to adulthood. As you can see, things are already pretty hectic, but that's the way we like it! Baamaapii!