A number of years ago, my friend, Annette Dunning, invited me to "The Scranton Musical" in Scranton, Texas. I went to help out with serving the dinner. I was instantly hooked.
Along a winding road spattered with family farms, cattle and mesquites, you are carried back in time from 2015 gradually like a time machine. No fancy sign, just a looming remnant of a stone building, hollowed out by time and fire, home now to a large field of cactus and rattle snakes, we turn in.
The building is the old Scranton school. Home of the antelopes. Photographs are stapled to the wall in the dining hall reminding us of where we all came. The cooks begin gathering and the food is familiar and delicious. Served cafeteria style with your choice of pie.... $5.00. The musicians eat for free.
Chatting of families, memories and old times fills the air while everyone finds a seat at the tables. Looking to your right you can see the farm land next to the school building and watch as the farm dogs chase each other around the shed. An old porcelain toilet sits among the flowering cactus. Barbed wire fencing barely obscures the view.
Then... the musicians begin tuning up. The stage is set and everyone gradually files into the auditorium which is filled with pews. Air conditioners in the windows hum along with the musicians tuning up.
The first group takes the stage. Guitar players with guitars which look old and well worn, piano players, singers and the like begin to offer their hearts and talents and old familiar country and gospel songs fill the air. It is magical.
"This will all be gone and no one will remember.." goes through my mind. Being a photographer, I make a few stills and realize this needs to be filmed...
This it the beginning of this journey to create this documentary. To pay respects to a life all too soon which will be lost. The people of the Scranton School and those who come here the first Saturday of each month.
We are filming on several events hoping to get everything and everyone into this documentary. Where the cell service is sketchy and I am not sure if this is not a good thing...
more to come...