Life of Matheo

Click here for the Dutch version: Vertaal naar Nederlands

The story of Matheo:
“Life of Matheo” is a story about a young boy from Cameroon. One day his mother sends him off to get groceries at a nearby village. His mother warns him to not leave the road because of all the dangers of the savannah.
Matheo has only just started his walk when suddenly a crow starts talking to him; telling Matheo to leave the road for a shorter and more exciting route. The crow blames Matheo for being boring; convincing Matheo to follow his advise.
So there goes Matheo… Off on an adventure.

The music:
In this project Micha Lorenz, Antoine Duijkers, Miguel Boelens and Teun Creemers meet eachother on stage to tell the story of Matheo. With various cleverly constructed compositions Teun succeeded in capturing the magic of the story into his music.
If only by listening it’s like you’re standing next to Matheo in this surreal world with talking animals. A world that can also be seen as a methafor for life itself because each time Matheo comes across an animal there’s a life lesson to be found in the conversation with the animal.

In order to appeal to a younger crowd “Life of Matheo” can also be extended with a profesional storyteller. Hans Platenkamp is a great storyteller who joins the group to play for audiences with children from all ages. The music itself will grasp most listeners but the story binds it all together to make it a great show for both young and old.

Teun Creemers: “Life of Matheo” is a result of 2 deep wishes I’ve had for a long time.
I always find it very important to make music that connects people. I don’t want to focus on pleasing the typical jazzaudience by making my music extra complicated or by staying away from the simple stuff. But on the other hand I also want my music to be a challenge to play every time we (the band) go on stage. It has to be the perfect mixture of both and above all; the music has to appeal to ‘experienced listeners’ and ‘unexperienced listeners’ like children.

That brings me to my second point: I often notice that children don’t have a clue about music anymore these days. Nowadays they only listen to dj’s or overly produced popmusic while they don’t even know what kind of instruments they’re actually listening to. By playing this music in front of such a young audience I want to make ‘real music’ a thing again so that they at least learn about what our instruments can do. With some luck they’ll get enthousiastic and might want to pick up an instrument for their selves too.

I’m convinced that “Life of Matheo” has this power. It stimulates children to paint pictures in their minds of what they hear in the story. Hans, the storyteller, only gently pushes them in the right direction, but the music itself plays the main role in stimulating their fantasies. This, per example, is one of the main reasons why we decided not to use any film or photo material. Why ‘spoil’ our image of Matheo and the animals when the children could perhaps create an even more colourful image of them in their own minds?