I am a not a singer

Creative Work
Year: 
1997
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Megan Heyward's interactive narrative, I Am a Singer, was created in 1997 with Macromedia Director for the artist's MFA thesis and was exhibited widely after its release. Concerned with memory and identity, I Am a Singer tells the fictional story of Isobel Jones, a famous rock singer who has been in an accident and is suffering amnesia. Although she is still able to access the media traces of her life- songs, articles, newspaper clippings, and various items of personal memorabilia, she cannot draw together these disparate threads into a meaningful sense of self.  Structurally, I Am A Singer is a narrative built of fragments, of small, discrete but intersecting sequences, mirroring the fragmented consciousness of the singer. It operates on a number of levels – as a pure tale about an amnesiac singer trying to regain her memory, and as a broader exploration of identity and memory.

I Am A Singer was supported by Interactive Media funding from the Australian Film Commission (now Screen Australia ) of $57,400 and premiered as a finalist in the MILIA New Talent Pavilion in Cannes, France. It was exhibited widely between 1997 and 2000 in Australia, France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Canada, USA, Mexico and Brazil.  I am a Singer won several national Australian awards for digital media including Apple Australia Award for Individual Excellence 1998, AIMIA ’98 best title produced by a student, and the US Invision‘98 Awards (US)- Best Digital Storytelling (Bronze), Omni Intermedia‘98 Awards (US)- Experimental (Silver) and Omni Intermedia‘98 Awards (US)- Sound Design (Silver).

Megan undertook multiple creative roles in the development of the work, as writer, artist, graphic/ interface designer, director, sound desiner and programmer. Her AFC funding allowed her to commission singwriter Phil Kakulas of Australian band The Black Eyed Susans to write two original songs for the work:- 'I Am a Singer" and 'Going Down". Black Eyed Susans musicians Phil Kakulas, Kiernan Box, Dan Luscombe and Mark Dawson played on the two tracks and incidental music for the project, which can be heard throughout the work interspersed with Megan's sound design elements. The track I Am a Singer was later recorded in entirety by the band and vocalist Rob Snarksi and released commercially.

Megan built the project in Macromedia Director , and it comprises approximatley 55 Director files and 10 video files and 50 audio files. The project took several years to fully develop.

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I Am a Singer floating
I Am a Singer media path
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Dene Grigar