A sonic and lyrical representation of an internal transformation process catalyzed by the shedding of one’s former identity.
♫♪ The crackling sound that comes in at the second verse was made by dipping a waterproofed homemade contact mic into a bowl of Coca-Cola® and Pop Rocks®! Listen close and you can hear! I first waterproofed the mic so that I could freeze it in a block of ice and pour hot water over it, but that technique somehow didn’t provide results NEARLY as good as old-fashioned Pop Rocks®
"A song so piercing and memorable, like icicles echoing in the wind" -Red Rock Film Festival
"...heavenly as the Andrews Sisters" -Ron Scroggin
"...indescribably wonderful song" -EarlyWyrn
"there is a feeling i get of 3 things colliding, 50's jazz lounge soloists, madonna vogue, and the impending cybernetic overthrow of the human race" -Michael Karouzos
"...I am floored by your sincerity, lustre, otherworldliness, and autonomy..." -Arvo Fingers
"The music and vocal performance are hauntingly unforgettable..." -Sighter7
S T R E T C H Music Video Awards:
Amsterdam Film Festival - Van Gogh Award, World Cinema - Music Video 2011
Independents’ Film Festival - Winner, Best Independent Music Video 2011
Talking Pictures Festival - Honorable Mention, Experimental 2011
Canada International Film Festival - Rising Star Award for Excellence in Filmmaking 2010
Louisville International Film Festival – Winner, Best Music Video 2010
Very Short Movies Festival - Winner, Best Music Video 2010
(Full list of Festival Screenings can be found at bottom of page)
Sarah: I started writing the first lines of the song soon after B-17 (see soundtrack under my other releases) was finished. That means it was August or September of 2006. I had started to come down from the high of being completely absorbed in that world: creating that world, believing in that world, living in that world, and on top of that being totally absorbed in the filmmaking process, learning the ropes of a medium that was so new and exciting to me and seeing all of the possibilities it had to offer. The world (and in hindsight, the process) that Arturo (Cubacub, co-filmmaker) and I built in the 8 months that we were working on the movie was totally exhilarating, inspiring, synergistic, freeing, challenging and empowering for me, since I had never worked so hard or put so much of myself and my talents into a project of that scope. Then it was just over and I mean, it’s not like my life suddenly changed as I had somehow expected it to. I got off the ride and everything around me was still the same as before I had gotten on, but I had changed, I was different. Feeling a little lost, I started trying to assimilate myself back into "normal reality", which was impossibly depressing. I remember trying to relate to my peers, trying to move through life the way I once had... and feeling like my mind was literally broken. It was confusing and alienating and impossible to describe. Though disappointing at times, in a strange way it was kind of interesting to feel so detached and outside of myself, seeing things from a new (albeit “cracked”) vantage point.
Arturo: Sarah had immersed herself so fully into her character in B-17 (way past method acting, into "method living"), that when it was over, she ended up deep in this interstitial space between her character, who she was before the project, and who she was becoming.
I remember her getting a lot of grief from her friends and acquaintances, who could not relate to what she was doing and going through, understandably so, since from the outside, our project and working method looked totally bizarre if not somewhat dangerous.
Sarah: The first phrase of S T R E T C H came into my mind pretty naturally and I sang it to Arturo one day outside of his old studio. He got really excited right away and was like "We have to do a music video for this".
Arturo: When she sang me the beginnings of S T R E T C H, it so lucidly captured her reality, re-entry issues perhaps, but mostly, this extraordinary sojourn, a profound morphing/transformation process I was seeing her go through. I knew we had to do this music vid to document the metaphysics. Real method living - and she has not re-entered who she was before we started B-17.
Sarah: From that day on, this elusive "Music Video" for a song that didn't yet exist became our eternal 'next little project'. We sporadically discussed, refined and even shot it (!) for 2 1/2 years before I finally sat down to record the song. The footage of me in my bed (same bedroom we shot B-17 in!) with longer hair is from 2007 and the nude, white footage is from 2009!
Arturo: Before Sarah finally finished recording the song and before we shot the white footage, I started developing the look and visual feel for the video as I was editing Greater than Less Than (you can also find this soundtrack under my releases). I was playing around with the idea of how to visually represent the internal deconstruction she had gone through and the “blank white slate” that was now her new persona which she was beginning to articulate. I felt I had witnessed her process one of those scary and beautiful transitions in one’s life where everything and every possibility were totally wide open.
I think those visuals might have given her the reference for which we could go on and finish the video. She decided to do the shoot in the nude to complete the look and finished the song. We do inspire and many times compel each other to take the next step.
Sarah: Once we got around to shooting and making the video, it actually felt like the right time. After B-17 and Greater Than Less Than, which were totally complex, epic, maximalist, colorful, over-the-top, gritty and literally dirty (like the sets themselves were totally nasty, sticky and dangerous), I wanted to do something that felt like a clean slate: fresh, pure, minimalist and elegant. I had originally gotten an idea to be singing in front of all of the cracked ice-sheets on the Chicago River in the winter, but the white look that Arturo was playing with in that shot of me in Greater Than Less Than ended up being the perfect idea. Essentially by that time I wanted a baptism, a total cleansing to prepare me for the next phase of work.
Arturo: To me, this project is an illustration of the aftereffects of the “Method Living” practice that Sarah adopted when we made B-17. The process of doing S T R E T C H acutely revealed to me the risks, dangers and rewards that a talented and courageous performer like Sarah, who chooses to totally immerses herself in the experience and the character she plays, undergoes.
Music Video Festival Screenings:
September 2011 Salento International Film Festival (Italy)
September 2011 30th Annual New Jersey Film Festival (New Brunswick)
September 2011 18th Annual Independents’ Film Festival (Tampa, Florida)
September 2011 Chicago International REEL SHORTS Festival (Chicago)
June 2011 ONECLOUDFEST (Facebook/Sweden)
May 2011 Artsfest Film Festival (Harrisburg PA)
April 2011 Talking Pictures Festival (Chicago)
March 2011 Queens World Film Festival (NYC)
November 2010 See the Voice: Visible Verse 10th Anniversary Celebration & Festival
November 2010 Red Rock Film Festival
October 2010 Louisville International Film Festival
August 2010 Atlanta Shortsfest
July 2010 Seen and Heard Music Video FestivalJune 2010 Visionfest (NYC)
June 2010 Philadelphia Independent Film Festival
May 2010 Cannes Independent Film Festival
May 2010 Very Short Movies Festival
April 2010 London Independent Film Festival
March 2010 Chicago International Movies & Music Festival
March 2010 Boston Underground Film Festival