Seats Please

Taking a cue from theaters across the land, our unplanned but necessary interval in the project is now over. It’s not the first time we’ve apologised for the radio silence, it may not be the last, but we do want to let you know where we are at and what’s coming up soon.

When you take a group of people and put together a project, you inevitably have very ambitious plans as to each others time on the project. Then time marches on, the day jobs move at blistering pace and suddenly you are just over a month until showtime. I guess this is what happens when you put together a band of teachers, freelancers, creatives and technologists. But one thing is for sure, when these people get together, regardless of what may seem impossible, improbable and downright insane, it always comes through in the end.

When we started The Jumblies Project 2017, we set out early on to be as transparent and up front with the project as we could be, show you the work in progress and let you know whats happening every step of the way. Which is why I’m writing this state of the nation post. I want to give you a run down of what each of us are up to – in and out of The Jumblies, where the project is at and where it’s headed next. (Hint: a lot is happening over the next couple of weeks.)


Who’s been doing what?

Gabrielle & Charlotte – To say the staff at St. John’s have been busy in an understatement. Not only did Charlotte have a (very successful) Brighton Fringe show to create and manage, but both have been part of team that is going through a challenging post – oftsed phase. All hands are to the deck and barely a moment to reflect further than their day to day tasks. To cap it off the end of the year is always a very busy and challenging time for the students who find the upcoming summer break difficult to anticipate and manage. The staff are tired, but need to keep their A-game running 24/7, it’s hard.

Louis and Matt both freelancing and holding down regular paid work have found themselves in the middle of one of those proverbial ‘it all happens at once’ moments. When working as they do on the types of projects that they do, saying no is hard not just because of the need to pay bills, but more so because they just truly love their work. Louis has been busy working in TV land, and if any of you readers know that space, TV land doesn’t do 9 to 5. It devours all the time you have to give and then devours some more.

Beth who was going to be doing our animation workshops left St. John’s last month, a great loss for them and an even bigger loss to us. Beth is a super talented animator and would have added so much to this project, we wish her well in her new role.

Which brings us to me, I’ve been more fortunate, my last few months have not been as stressful but have been dominated by a life event – career change. As anyone who has moved career knows, it takes some time to adjust. I had spent nearly 9 years working in specialist education and now have now moved into higher education. The shift has been profound, not least having so much new stuff to learn from so many talented colleagues, but also the culture and pace of the working day. I had massively underestimated how long it would take me to adjust to new routines.

So as you can see, we have a lot going on, yet this project is so dear to us, so important to us that regardless of what we’ve got going on, we will adjust and we will adapt because as they say, the show must go on.


So where are we at and what’s coming up?

I had the pleasure of meeting up with Matt this week and we discussed how we are going to get this sieve floating again. First up imagery. Our immediate priority is getting all our image assets in order. The art teacher at St. John’s has been facilitating some fantastic work just waiting to be digitised. Over the next few days we should have some sense of what’s missing so we can quickly get to filling the gaps.

Next up storyboard. With time running thin we are going to think real careful about how we make the most of the technology we have, and ensure we manage expectations as to what we want to achieve. Expect to see this over the next week or two.

Music, as you’ve seen some of the music output has been nothing short of glorious. I’ve had word this week that the Sea Shanty has been finished, I can’t wait to hear it.

Narration and storytelling, over the next couple of weeks Charlotte and the students of St. John’ll be putting hours into practicing The Jumblies poems and blocking scenes ready for run throughs.

Then last but no means least, Louis and Matt will work tirelessly to stitch it all together.

So yeah, there you have it, sorry it’s a long post, but it was a long interval, and the queue for the bar was epic…




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