cello

Branson Christmas!

PURE JOY! Be sure to experience The Johnson Strings Christmas show this November and December! Listening to strings at Christmas - what could be more fitting for the season?

Come see this family of 8 award-winning musicians and vocalists cut loose in a fun-filled Christmas show that will steal your heart! Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass, Piano, Mandolin, Banjo, and Vocals! Enjoy amazing cookies and brownies made from scratch by our in-house chef!
***Call 417-231-2420 for tickets!***
At the historic Majestic Steaks building theater- 2849 Gretna Rd. behind the Tanger Outlet Mall in Branson, MO. Click here to purchase tickets: http://www.thejohnsonstrings.com/purchase-tickets/ 

Sit back and relax during special renditions the Hallelujah Chorus and the Nutcracker. Clap along to banjo and mandolin on Jingle Bells and see trick fiddling on The Orange Blossom Special. Experience a stirring patriotic tribute and then listen to the celestial sounds of What Child is This, done in a way you've never seen before! See four people play one grand piano (that's 40 fingers on only 88 keys), and then listen to Silas sing O Holy Night. That's only the beginning! We'd love to see you at our Branson Show! The Johnson Strings Christmas!

Christmas ad Branson Insider LOGO only.jpg

"I Will Sing" Music Video - Behind the Scenes

Although it doesn't show in the video, we were battling soggy ground, mud, and later lots of rain on the way home! This made walking somewhat treacherous for the girls, who were in heels....we had many clean up sessions in-between takes! 

Making music videos is an adventure. This one was no different! With hours of travel time and many hours of filming, we had one long 16 hour work day!

Karen wasn't quite tall enough to get the shot I needed here, so we helped her out!

...relaxing when it's not their turn to be filmed...

Here, the guys are a safety net to make sure no one tumbles off the edge of the bridge during a song take!

Just (carefully) having some fun!

...getting set up at the English Garden... It's a race against time! Once the sun moves enough, the lighting will turn ugly and we'll have to move on to a different shot.

Waiting to start playing once again... By the end of the day, you have played the song so many times that your fingers begin to rebel! 

Dad had to stick his end pin into a piece of wood to keep it from sinking into the soft earth.

...what a cute, young praying mantis - how nice of him to pay us a visit!

Dad had a marvelous idea to end our long day... go to Culver's! Both the food and the frozen yogurt were especially delicious due to the fact that we were so worn out and hungry!

To watch the finished video, click on the link below!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zY2MoKlAPs 

This movie was filmed on location at The Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. Visit them at www.DubuqueArboretum.net 

Schindler's List Video Shoot - Behind the Scenes!

To see the finished video on YouTube, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUigOhTXUNg 

IMG_1071byLaura for web.jpg
IMG_1073byLaura for web.jpg

The reflector came in useful for this shot. Karen could feel the heat of the sun!

IMG_0027byLaura for web.jpg

My highlighted, detailed shot list and notes. (These were actually the notes from Granny, Does Your Dog Bite, but you get the idea!)

IMG_1079byLaura for web.jpg

Luke, Seth, and my dad took turns filming a few moving shots that included me. 

IMG_1095byLaura for web.jpg

This was definitely the toughest shot of the movie! As the last scene, I wanted a drive-away moving shot. With all sorts of bumps and ruts in the road, getting a smooth shot wasn't easy! Seth hung out the back door and held the Glidecam HD 4000 for me while I filmed. Luke was at the wheel. After trying several takes with the Jeep, we got the winning take using our Sprinter van. That way, we were able to stand up and hang out the back doors, absorbing the bumps with our knees. All in all, it was quite a feat to keep our outfits clean during the whole process!

IMG_8554byLaura for web.jpg

Before filming, we moved all the items that wouldn't fit the look we were after.

Inside the vandalized house - because of its age and the vandalism, this house fit the "war scene" feel very well. We were thrilled that we were able to get permission to film in this perfect location!

IMG_8713byLaura for web.jpg

Filming the night scene was both fun and eerie! I could really feel the music!

Talking about how we should film the next scene...

Preparing mentally before another take...

 

Again, if you're curious to see how these bits and pieces came together in the finished product, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUigOhTXUNg 

See you later!

Granny, Does Your Dog Bite?

Hi again, everyone! Time has been flying along at break-neck speed around here, hence the sad shortage of blog posts recently! Hopefully that shortage will be fixed soon. Anyway, to get to the exciting part, we have now released our next YouTube video!!! Granny, Does Your Dog Bite? You can watch it here, like it at the link below, and subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you will be notified when our next video comes out!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4UHmlMz0kg 

Time for some behind-the-scenes details and pictures!

Do you see the stream? It's deeper and more slippery to cross than it looks! We threw one pair of mud boots in the van when we were packing and used those and a handy stick to ferry people across the stream... put on mud boots, hold onto stick, wade across stream with expensive instrument, have someone on the opposite bank toss your shoes over to you after you've crossed, toss the mud boots back over the stream, repeat! 

Yep. It was interesting getting the piano and the bass down there.

Toby, our dog, was hilarious! The out-takes of him are definitely worth watching. After we told him to "go get it!" to eat the sandwich, Luke was on the opposite side of the camera with a dog treat to call him after he snarfed down one sandwich quarter. After doing the take a couple of times, Toby got wise, looked at Luke, and then snarfed down a second sandwich quarter before running to Luke. It was a riot! 

Getting the cellos safely into the watery cave!

Our two cellists! You can't imagine how cold the spring water was coming out of the cave!!! The boys' feet were quite cold at the end of this scene!

Icey cold!

IMG_1612byLaura for web.jpg
IMG_1616byLaura for web.jpg

To get to the next location meant packing up all the various instruments and camera equipment, and carrying everything to the next spot where we unpacked it all again! Generator, amplifier, piano, bass, instruments, etc....

Of course, for this video we had Toby with us, so we all had to make sure all the dog hair was gone from our clothes before each take! It was worth it, though, to have him along! 

Well, I'll leave you with this image - our very buggy scene! Bugs in our eyes, bugs in our mouths, and so on!

It was a fun, exhausting, and rewarding day!

P.S. Our next video is on track to be released in two weeks!

All about SILAS!!!

A wonderful cellist... a great pianist... a super amazing brother.... what more could you ask?

Silas with this school year's piano awards!

Silas with this school year's piano awards!

Silas during his piano recital...

Silas during his piano recital...

Silas with his orchestra director, Mr Schilke! 

Silas with his orchestra director, Mr Schilke! 

Silas warming up with the Northern Iowa Junior Orchestra after their tour, and before their spring concert in Davis Hall at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. He is first chair cellist out of 11 cellos! This year, one of the pieces the orchestra performed was Saint Saens "Carnival of the Animals". So, Silas got to play "The Swan" as a solo during the concert. He did a fantastic job!

Silas warming up with the Northern Iowa Junior Orchestra after their tour, and before their spring concert in Davis Hall at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. He is first chair cellist out of 11 cellos! This year, one of the pieces the orchestra performed was Saint Saens "Carnival of the Animals". So, Silas got to play "The Swan" as a solo during the concert. He did a fantastic job!