Midwood High School opened its doors in Brooklyn, NY in 1941. The school has a rich legacy of musical performance, including a long-standing tradition called SING. Organized by class, students would devise original musicals approximately 40 minutes long. Every SING performance told an original story with creative characters and involved musical numbers. Each class performed its piece in an annual competition to be the winning SING.
The Midwood High School Alumni Association has archived recordings from seven decades of SING, as well as other special soundbites. They wanted to make this audio available for listening. To this end, I created a music website for the MHSAA on Bandcamp.
Wendy Guida, Midwood HS Archivist & MHSAA: "Maya was recommended to me when our alumni association's website needed an overhaul. She had the vision to see beyond what we had, while preserving the content we had that worked. Maya listens. She listened to what we wanted and built it in ways that were even better than we had imagined. She has risen to the challenges our organization faced as we went through staffing changes and planned and executed a huge fundraising event. Her work made it all possible and made it all go so smoothly. Maya is also a pleasure to work with, as she is a bright, funny and engaging partner who made our website hopes a reality."
I listened to each audio recording with growing curiosity, discovering the story as it unfolded. I received each SING as one long file, and I cut it up into individual tracks using audio software. I named each track to give a sense of storytelling. I also wrote descriptions for each SING, as well as the MHSAA bio. The header image I created from Midwood memorabilia I photographed during a visit to the school archives. The whole process of digging into the school's creative history was enthralling.
I especially loved this hilarious musical meditation on Time. Listen as the Musicians of Time & Life who keep time for the world tire of their job and decide to hand it over to humans.
Midwood's Class of 1959 compiled many of the school's most memorable sounds. This "talking yearbook" was made into a record that accompanied every 1959 Epilogue yearbook.
Recordings shared on the MHSAA Facebook Page garnered interest and promoted alumni conversation.
See all the recordings up now on the Midwood Alumni Bandcamp.