Sunday, 16 September 2012

The Daughter of Dawn

vid 1
Published on 28 Aug 2012 by
The opening scene of the 1920 silent film, "Daughter of Dawn," by Norbert Myles. The film was rediscovered and restored by the Oklahoma State Historical Society, Dr. Bob Blackburn, Executive Director. The musical score was composed by Dr. David A. Yeagley (Comanche). Dr. Yeagley was commissioned by the Oklahoma State Historical Society, December 12, 2007. The music was performed and recorded by the Oklahoma City University Philharmonic, Benjamin Nilles, Conducting.
vid 2
Published on 28 Aug 2012 by
The scene when Kiowa Chief calls for buffalo meat to save his hungry people.
vid 3
Published on 28 Aug 2012 by
Scene when White Eagle tells the Chief that he has seen the buffalo herd.
vid 4
Published on 28 Aug 2012 by
The Thanksgiving Dance for the buffalo herd.

Discovery of Long-Lost Silent Film With All-Indian Cast Has Historians Reeling

This wildly ambitious project had an all-Native cast, just one cameraman, no costumes, no lighting, no props and wild buffalo. The Indians, who had been on the reservation less than 50 years, brought with them their own tipis, horses and gear. Featured in the film were White Parker, Esther LeBarre, Hunting Horse, Jack Sankeydoty and Wanada Parker, daughter of Quanah Parker, a Comanche chief and one of the founders of the Native American Church movement.
Once descendants of the Kiowa and Comanche cast members were identified, Blackburn arranged to screen The Daughter of Dawn for the families in the Oklahoma towns of Anadarko, Carnegie and Lawton. “There were tears,” he recalls. “They recognized an aunt or a grandparent, and out of that conversation came recognition of the tipi used in the film. It was very powerful for them to see family members who were pre-reservation wearing their own clothing and using family heirlooms that had been brought out of trunks. It was very emotional for them.”

Read complete article:

vid 5
Published on 29 Aug 2012 by
Excerpt from THE DAUGHTER OF DAWN, entitled "Sepia Blue Night." Sample Film Music Scoring by Brent Michel Davids. "Sepia Blue Night" is a clip from the feature film "The Daughter of Dawn" (1920), written and directed by Norbert Miles and produced by the nonextant Texas Film Company. The film was refurbished by the National Film Preservation Foundation and the Oklahoma Historical Society. The clip's original music is copyright by Brent Michael Davids, ©2007. [read more here]


Anonymous said...

Perhaps it is important to note that Brent M. Davids has nothing to do with the Daughter of Dawn film project. He wanted the commission, but he did not get it. He and his music were rejected in 2007, along with several other aspirants. David A. Yeagley (Comanche) is the commissioned composer. He apparently wants everyone to think he has something to do with the film. The clip you are displaying is synthesized by Davids. He obtained a DVD of the silent film when he was auditioning for the gig. It might not be appropriate for him to use it in this way. Again, he is not part of the project, nor ever has been. I think this is important to know. He has never been commissioned to write a complete film score. Dr. Yeagley is the first American Indian to be commissioned to write a complete film score.

Anonymous said...

Clarification: Davids apparently wants the public to think he has something to do with the film. He does not. The clip of the sepia blue is something Brent posted three months after Dr. Yeagley was commissioned. It was posted on VIMEO, rather obscurely, but came to light only when the real Daughter of Dawn project stormed the internet. VIMEO removed Brent's clip, because it violent VIMEO rules. YouTube has apparently made no such action. Please be aware. Brent is also being sued for libel for similar and related behavior.

Joanne Arnott said...

Thanks for the updates & clarifications. I noted the tensions in my research, and hadn't intended to exacerbate them.

My interest in sharing clips of both together was to highlight two things:

- the different aspects of the full-length film that people can anticipate, in attending theatre showings or in purchasing the dvd;

- the profession of musical composition, how different composers will take up different tools and resources, and explore some (but never all!) possible routes, for creating the sound aspect to any film.

Creating a short film inspired by the original footage is a different project than creating the full score for a feature-length film.

Taken as a separate thing, the brief music video (for that is what it is) is an attractive short.

The small and the great must forever co-exist! In these times of volatile change, in copyright law no less than in the technical aspects of media, patience may well be needed, and "discussions" work themselves out in court rooms as well as on social media.

I have posted many short films sharing compositions of Russell Wallace (Lil'wat), Sandy Scofield (Metis), and other talented indigenous (and non-indigenous) composers.

I hope you'll check them out:

warm regards,