Tuesday, March 08, 2011

"Awake, My Soul" Travel Log, pt 1

Alright then. With two screenings under my belt, I am off to Birmingham, AL. The first screening of "Awake, My Soul" was at East Carolina University which is in Greenville, North Carolina-- not South Carolina, nor East Carolina (which, I've learned, does not exist). I've been in most parts of North Carolina, but never this far east. Greenville is a charming town, as it turns out, and I wasn't able to spend as much time there as I would have liked, but I did get some fine BBQ here:
I thought I hit the jackpot when I found an antique shop that looked just right to me- the perfect level of disarray in the crowded shop. A man greeted me tentatively at the door and asked if I was looking for anything in particular. "Nope. Just looking around" I said. "Well, I can't let you in" he replied "they've condemned my building".
Not sure what it says about me that the most perfect looking place to me happened to have been a condemned property...

The screening itself was good and reasonably well attended thanks especially to the music appreciation professors who bribed their students with extra credit to come. Our efforts to hold a screening were initially thwarted by the "smart room" which was to be our cinema for the evening. It utterly outsmarted all of us. We could find no way to make the projector work, so we invaded the recital hall, which was a better space anyway. There was a lengthy, and surprisingly technical Q&A following the film. The associate dean of ECU, Michael Crane, was a great help, and as hospitable as can be...

The next screening was in Hapeville, GA, which is, in many ways, a typical small southern town, except that it happens to be the home of the world's busiest airport, not to mention that it is also the home of Chick-fil-a, inasmuch as the first location, the "Dwarf House" has been on the main drag since the 1940's.We ate there. Since Hapeville is only about 15 minutes from our house in West End, my wife and kids were able to come. The historical society of Hapeville runs the old train depot as a museum of Hapeville and pretty much anything that's old-timey. It's great. They hosted a reception before the screening, which I guess it was supposed to be a "meet-the-director time", but it was really a "keep-our-kids-from-breaking-all-the-cool-old-timey-stuff-in-the-depot time". Here's the Model T Ford covered with Christmas lights:
The screening went well and we were made to feel at home by Charlotte Rentz of Hapeville's historical society as well as the Mayor.There was an enthusiastic Q&A afterward and we invited the 10 or so Sacred Harp singers present to join us in a few songs to close the event.

Next up, Birmingham and Augusta....

Matt Hinton, signing off.