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#59

Inlets / Marla Hansen

Story by Marla Hansen :

It was very exciting, getting the boats with Mathieu. We didn’t have a lot of time to film, and the pressure of that–combined with my own visions of us all tipping into the dirty water, cameras and all–made me feel like a kid doing something slightly wrong, like maybe we were all supposed to be in math class but had skipped out to do this. We were not good oarsmen, but we willed ourselves to reach interesting spots. Turns out the park rangers didn’t appreciate our project and told us to cease and desist, to “stop and get out of the park,” which we interpreted as “go to another part of the park and keep filming.” This was the correct interpretation, as we found a nice rock for me and Sebastian to sit on, to serenade the tourists and the squirrels, and the rangers left us alone.

A few weeks later, I was playing a show at the Annex, and the audience would not be quiet and my friends couldn’t hear me at all. I was overcome with the realization that things would be much better if I left the club and played my songs outside, if I did a Take Away Show right then and there. So I did it: I left the stage after one song and did the rest of my set outside sitting on the street. It was great, spontaneous and intimate in the way that only something quiet done in public can be.

So, to sum up, here is the lesson I learned from the Take Away Shows: if the park ranger tells you to leave the park and stop playing, just go somewhere else and do it anyway. If the audience was expecting loud rock and roll and they don’t like your quiet folkiness, go somewhere else, go outside, go anywhere you like, and just play. It will most certainly be better.