Mondays blow. Under the best of circumstances, Mondays are unpleasant, but right now I’m gearing up for a really big project, there are big changes happening at work, I’ve got a million stressful things going on, and it’s all a bit overwhelming. However, I’m pretty sure this video may cure what ails me, or at least make it significantly better.
After seeing this amazing single-shot music video, I needed to find out more about who Irma is and what mad genius conceived of this beautiful idea. First, Irma. She hails from Cameroon, and now lives in France. She’s the (obvious) child of music lovers; her father is a guitarist and her mother sings in a church choir. She moved to Paris at the tender age of 15 to further her education, and promptly became a YouTube sensation. Her teenage covers of I Want You Back, Natural Woman, and The Times They Are a Changing (with her friend Patrice, the boy) are particularly lovely and moving and honest. Of course, a couple of years later, it was obvious the girl was going places when she posted a second cover of I Want You Back, this time with Will.I.Am. Personally, I prefer her earlier version.
Now the video. The concept and execution is by the French design firm, Superbien, and directed by Xavier Maingon and Marc-Antoine Hélard who shot the video on a single soundstage with the use of 7 digital projectors. It took 25 takes before all the elements, the projection mapping, the little girls (What is it they say? Never work with animals or children?), the drummers, the lighting, the camera boom operators, and Irma herself, all got it exactly right. As in the OK Go video with which I was obsessed, I was once again taken in by the victorious moment when it all came together. Irma’s victory lap is eminently satisfying.
P.S. I am thrilled that I was able to find the making of video, but please try not to watch it until you’ve watched the finished video. I don’t want you to spoil the magic for yourself.
And since you’ve stuck with me and our girl for so long, here’s a special bonus for you. From Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, the show I did in theater camp in 1979, here is Ne Me Quitte Pas. (BTW, she plays piano, too???)