The Capital Project added to NFB Archive Collection

Category: community 112

RayneMaker Productions’ exhaustive examination of Fredericton’s music scene has been recut and added to the National Film Board’s online collection and digital archive. 

Matt Carter 

If you live in or around Fredericton and consider yourself a member of the local music community there is a good chance you are familiar with The Capital Project (TCP). From 2017 until 2020, filmmaker Tim Rayne, producer Arthur Thomson, and a team of cinematic artists interviewed dozens of local musicians and shot hundreds of hours of live footage in an attempt to expose the various ways music can affect a community. This exhaustive series, which took the form of both a full length feature documentary and a multi-episode web series, showcased musicians from all walks of life and all levels of ability. The project is thorough, comprehensive and easily one of the best examinations of a local music scene ever cut. 

Over the past few years audiences have followed The Capital Project through various versions and edits. There was a full length feature which debuted to a capacity crowd at the Fredericton Playhouse in 2018. But that was more of a teaser than anything else. As a web series, The Capital Project debuted in May of 2019 on YouTube before being pulled and re-edited into a ten-part series which aired on CBC Television. The series also spawned the documentary My Song Is My Name, which focuses on Indigenous musicians from New Brunswick. 

Now it appears the project has finally found a permanent home and perhaps more importantly, a final form. The Capital Project, in its ten-part form, was recently added to the National Film Board’s archive collection, home to the most comprehensive collection of films highlighting Canadian life and culture. 

“I grew up watching National Film Board documentaries. It has always been a dream of mine to have one of my projects be a part of the NFB Archives,” said Tim Rayne, who created and directed the series for RayneMaker Productions. “The fact that the NFB is respected around the world, provides an international platform, and will introduce The Capital Project to cinephiles and music lovers around the world is very exciting!”

The series – now live at nfb.ca – features a number of new edits and never-seen-before footage. 

Having collected so much material during production, it was an inevitability that certain interviews of performances wouldn’t make the final cut. While this unspoken reality is a part of the filmmaking process, Rayne still has some regret for not finding a place in the story for every voice he recorded.

“It was an ambitious undertaking,” he said. “I wanted to include everything that made the music community in Fredericton so great, but it turned out the scene was much larger than anything I could have imagined. I wanted to be as inclusive as possible. I wanted to address all the interesting angles and discoveries I found. In the end, I’ll always feel guilty that I couldn’t get everything out there at the same time. 

“I don’t really know if I ever had a clear picture on what The Capital Project was ever going to be in the end,” said Rayne. “It took on a life of its own and captured a moment in time. In that regard, I feel I have captured what I set out to do which was showcasing the incredible, richly dynamic, and supportive musical community here in Fredericton. That, I am proud of.”

Rayne will probably never be completely done with the project. Born out of his days as Station Manager with CHSR FM, Fredericton’s community/campus radio station where he became enthralled with the music being made locally, The Capital Project is a passion project for Rayne and one that remains close to his heart. He already has plans to post more unreleased footage to the project’s YouTube channel sometime in the future. But for now, he seems satisfied his project has found a home with an international audience.

“The NFB series does provide me some closure with the project,” said Rayne. “I don’t really know if I ever had a clear picture on what The Capital Project was ever going to be in the end. It took on a life of its own. It organically captured a moment in time. So in that regard, I have captured what I set out to do which was showcasing an incredible, richly dynamic, and supportive musical community here in Fredericton. That I am proud of. The series captured a vibrant period of the Fredericton music scene leading up to the pandemic – it was truly a special time.”

Production of The Capital Project was made possible with support from Telefilm Canada’s Microbudget Project Program as well as the New Brunswick Film, Television and Multimedia Industry Support Program.

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