Michael Faulkner is a Baltimore-based filmmaker, writer, location scout, and improv artist. Growing up in the country with horses and lots of land around him nurtured his sense of wonder, while singing in church and choir and local theatre developed his passion for music and art.
He has worked on countless film, television, and commercial sets, including Rocket Science, Ladder 49, and John Waters’s A Dirty Shame. Faulkner cultivated a love of photography and place while shooting as a Locations Manager for The Wire.
His journey with Shodekeh, Baltimore beatboxer and the subject of this film, began when he heard him do a long drum roll in a bar in Baltimore. This journey would take them half way around the world to the Republic of Tuva.
SHU-DE! is his first feature documentary.
Khoomei (hoo-may) or Tuvan throat singing is an ancient vocal tradition originating in the remote Republic of Tuva, which is located in the center of Asia in Siberia, and now, part of the Russian Federation. Considered to predate modern linguistics, Khoomei, involves a remarkable technique for singing two or more pitches simultaneously. The sounds are said to come from the land and harmonize with nature itself. The Alash Ensemble are masters of this vocal art and have been touring the world, sharing their music with other cultures, for years.
Shodekeh, a beatboxer and vocal percussionist from Baltimore, with a vision for creating an ‘oasis of unity through musical collaboration,’ has spent his life mastering new sounds and using them, while fostering seemingly unlikely collaborations. SHU-DE! is the story of what happened when these artists came together, utilizing their common instrument: the voice and body.
Alash and Shodekeh met during a 2011 tour, which brought the Tuvans to Baltimore for the first time and sparked a musical journey still developing to this day. Alash, impressed with the way Shodekeh’s vocal feats meshed with their own unique vocal tradition, invited him to join them in Kyzyl, Tuva as one of a few guest musicians, chosen from around the world, to participate in the 50th Birthday celebration and International Xoomei festival, in honor of the legendary Tuvan throat singer, Kongar-ool Ondar.
Taking only a small knapsack, Shodekeh journeyed to Tuva to study their music and culture, while sharing his own vocal artistry. During the trip he participated in a series of events, created music with Kongar-ool Ondar, Alash and the Tuvan National Orchestra, competed in an international throat singing contest, and even took part in Kuresh (the Tuvan sport of wrestling).
SHU-DE! (Tuvan for “giddyup” or “let’s go”) is a sensory experience of music and landscape that takes the viewer on a journey through the vastness of Tuva and that of the human voice, revealing the sounds that unfold with collaboration.
Tuesday, October 11, 2016: Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC, 7:00 PM ET
Wednesday, October 12, 2016: Jacksonville State University, Jacksonville, AL, 7:00 PM CT
Thursday, October 13, 2016: Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art/Auburn University, Auburn, AL, 5:00 PM CT
Sunday, October 16, 2016: Winder Cultural Arts Center, Winder, GA, 4:00 PM ET
Monday, October 17, 2016: East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN, 7:00 PM ET
Wednesday, October 19, 2016: Oxford College of Emory University, Oxford, GA, 7:30 PM ET
Thursday, October 20, 2016: Presbyterian College, Clinton, SC, 7:00 PM ET