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SCL member Dale Turner scores WEEDS--the first animated short film completed within the Filmmakers Co-op at Disney Feature Animation

 SCL member Dale Turner recently composed the musical score (playing a tiny "guitar-like" instrument from South America, called the CHARANGO) for a film created by numerous DISNEY artists (animators/editors/producers who worked on ZOOTOPIA, MOANA, WRECK-IT RALPH, BIG HERO 6, etc.) as part of the Disney Feature Animation Co-op program. This three-minute animated short is called WEEDS, on its surface, a story about a Dandelion, rooted in a barren yard, surrounded by dry dirt and dead grass, its fellow weeds withering away, trying to do what's best for its family. In reality, WEEDS is a story of empathy, and the struggle and distance someone (specifically IMMIGRANTS) may have to travel--against all odds--to find a better life. It took 1-1/2 years to complete.


Below are some words from Dale Turner, detailing his choice of the CHARANGO, the tiny "guitar-like" instrument at the musical heart of the film:

"When writer/director Kevin Hudson and I first discussed music--specifically 'instrument choices'--for WEEDS, three words stood out most: 'acoustic,' 'organic,â? and 'guitar.' From the get-go, it was obvious Kevin did not want synthetic or mechanical/programmed sounds driving his score. It also quickly became clear that a 'standard acoustic guitar' was too large for Dan, the tiny dandelion whose life path is chronicled in this film. A ukulele couldâ??ve fit the bill, but to me, that instrument is so overused in 'cute' music, I wanted to avoid it. Given the fact that Kevinâ??s picture is, in large part, an artistic reaction against todayâ??s 'weâ??re going to build a great wall' political climate, and the plight of immigrants, in general... as chance would have it, Iâ??d just obtained a Charango, a South American instrument thatâ??s similar to a ukulele, but with a much higher range; instead of a ukeâ??s four strings, it has five pairs of strings, providing 'sparkly' octave doublings and unisons. This instrument came to represent much of Danâ??s 'onscreen' time, tying in to his 'optimistic' stance on life as a weed. The score sprouted and blossomed from there."

To see Dale play the CHARANGO and talk about his WEEDS score, check out the following video (actual playing begins at the 3:13 mark):

WEEDS is also officially qualified for the 2018 Animated Short Oscar.



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