The Hinterlands ( 2013)
Director: Brandon Ivie
Producer: Annie Cull
Writers: Michelle Elliott, Danny Larsen
Genre: Musical, Web series
Web page: http://hinterlandsthemusical.com/
In the middle of nowhere, growing up gay is the worst.
Meet Paul. He’s 16. He’s into theoretical physics. He lives in the middle of nowhere. And he’s gay. Being a scrawny, queer science nerd practically makes him a bully magnet. And as the harassment piles up, Paul contemplates taking his own life. In THE HINTERLANDS, a six-part musical miniseries, Paul struggles to keep his head above water as he confronts intolerance, his sexuality and the rocky path of adolescence.
We wanted to respond to the issue of gay bullying in a way that would help kids like Paul understand that they’re incredibly valuable members of our human community and that they are inherently worthy of love and compassion. We decided to do what we do best – write a musical. As storytellers and songwriters, we can ask questions, create empathy and make change. By creating the character of Paul we believe we will be giving young people a person with whom they can relate and empathize. By watching Paul’s journey to discover how to cope with the day-to-day bullying he faces, teens can gain strength and be inspired to overcome their own obstacles. Yes, “it gets better” for gay youth who make it through their difficult childhood and teenage years, but The Hinterlands is our attempt to help all bullied young people find and embrace their own innate worthiness NOW, despite the onslaught of hatred they must survive every day.
A guiding factor in the creation of the Hinterlands as a musical web series – rather than a staged production – was our belief that kids need to be able to access a story like this from the safety of their own laptops, iPads and smart phones. And kids in the real hinterlands are the most in need of a project like this, as some communities are highly intolerant of gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender kids.
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