BEAT, 23min., UK
Directed by Christopher Karallis
Beat looks into the world of Saul Eisenberg, musician and performer who turns the discarded junk of our city into instruments that make unique and beautiful sounds.
Get to know the filmmaker:
I came across Saul when we moved back to London after eighteen years living in the USA. We were temporarily staying with my sister and the back of her house looked out onto a typical London back alley running behind a row of high street shops and rental flats punctuated by overflowing rubbish bins, garage lock ups and the constant hum of industrial extractor fans. It was also my short-cut to the park when I walked the dogs. Passing one of the double garages at the start of the mews I was frozen by a beautiful, lyrical, scale suddenly bursting into life seemingly out of nowhere. It sounded something like a Glockenspiel only more resonant, deeper in pitch and tone with a sound that penetrated my core. I realized the sound was drifting out from the half open door of one of the lock-ups. It stopped suddenly only to be replaced by the explosive whir of a power tool as an angle grinder cut against metal for several seconds. The contrast was stark. I poked my head under the garage door rather awkwardly to find Saul, a friendly, bemused smile on his face, filthy blue overalls, safety goggles pushed high up on his head standing over a series of heavy metal poles cut to various lengths. “I’m sorry but I just had to ask what you’re doing in here, that sound is…?” I wasn’t quite sure how to finish the sentence. Saul took the uninvited intrusion with warmth and good grace, telling me that he was making a “scaffold-a-phone” out of discarded scaffold poles. I was stunned. How could something so industrial and brutal sound so lovely. I peered around the lock up which was packed with spent gas tanks, fire extinguishers, old decking and even flip flops that had all been salvaged and turned into percussion instruments that, I would come to discover, all sounded not only beautiful but absolutely unique. A type of alchemy was occurring under our very noses and barely anyone knew about it. I realized immediately that I had to tell the story of the remarkable things Saul was doing with the discarded junk of our city and how his work is an inspiration to children, parents, musicians and anyone lucky enough to come into contact with his work.
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