— That’s me as Kele, a kestrel, telling a story with an owl at one of the wildlife education groups i help out at.
Music For Mascots, 2012
For those of you who’ve been following this blog long enough know that I was a professional mascot for the past ten years of my life. I know that’s such a random job to have, and it isn’t very often you meet someone who actually made mascoting a “career.” At one point, I worked for seven of the Rochester area teams at the same time. It left me with very little free time and lots of wear and tear on my body. At many points, my apartment would smell of sweaty and old mascot suits, something that grew on me but often would wrinkle the nose of visitors.
Since retiring to heal up my broken body and to get a newer and better paying job, a lot of those suits were sent back to their respective teams and only a few remained to lurk on hangers in my closets. Nearly all of those were suits either belonging to various wildlife education groups or were ones we built to use as talking characters for wildlife education events. Now, I don’t mean to sound like a raging hippie or anything, but that is something I’ve always enjoyed doing. And though these gigs aren’t as frequent or tiring as sports gigs, I still find myself donning a hawk or coyote suit from time to time and prancing around, reciting stories I’d drawn up about blue jays, foxes and other animals and where they all fit in the world.
So what does this have to do with music? Surprisingly, one wildlife groups I work with is publishing kid’s stories that I help write with them and we have plans to create a DVD version of these storytelling performances. We’ve toyed with the idea of getting me a large drum that I can strap on my shoulder and play while I tell the stories, and of course we’ll need some light music on the DVD. The challenge is that it’s hard to play a drum with massive paws, let alone afford one. And I can only imagine the process we’ll go through with the DVD’s score—I’ll just let that sit for a while.
I suppose I am letting this be a lot more stressful than it needs to be. This project is going to take a long time to carry out and we usually only book events with a storytelling session a few times a year. Though, we are hoping to increase that by several times. I guess the trick will be teaching myself to play a hand drum with massive mascot paws… though first, I need to find the drum and then be able to afford it. With a new wolf and fox character on the way, the gigs might speed up, especially once they get noticed.
Anyone out there have thoughts or suggestions?