Kampung Beatbox – What happens when children are introduced to a new art form?
“I was working with an NGO that offered free English classes to Orang Asli (indigenous people) communities in Malaysia. My friend Lloyd Green (who is a great journalist) and I decided to make a documentary on how the program impacted our students’ lives. We visited a number of kampungs (villages) in Pahang, filming the classes and spending time with the villagers, recording some of their daily activities.
One day, after regular shooting, we were hanging out with the kids from a village. Their energy inspired me to show them something they might not have heard before – beatbox. I started making sounds, vibrations and noise with my lips and mouth and they were just amazed! At first they just laughed with excitement. Then they started trying it out for themselves.
The rest of the day they followed me wherever I went, trying different combinations of sounds and noise to create a beat. I have to say they were really quite good at it!
It goes to show that even when you just take a few moments to introduce something unknown to someone, you could be opening whole new realms. In this case, the possibilities of making music with no instruments whatsoever. I believe that what they heard that day will teach them to appreciate new discoveries. Hopefully, it will also trigger their curiosity and help them discover a hidden passion or talent. It was a really cool example of that innocent thrill and the beauty of discovery.”