In early 2010, Kevin Stillen , educator at the Athénée Royal d’Arlon, had a funny idea for his students embark on a new adventure : make an audio book The Little Prince !
Courageous initiative , since the full transcript of the book never happened . Generous initiative also : profits will be donated to the association » Televie » in Belgium , which funds research against leukemia .
We return with him on the steps of this beautiful project.
« For years , » The Little Prince « have been my favorite book , I often read it to the students that I have under my responsibility, in internship ( 6-10 years). I decided to buy the audio read by Gérard Philippe. When I realized it was incomplete , I felt that the children had lost an important part of the story. So I started to dream to achieve the complete story with students I accompanied with homework (12-14 years) . But we weren’t going to do that » for nothing ». Making money was not an option. Given the potential popularity of this product , I thought donate the profits to a cause for the children, the Televie operation that is organized by the Belgian TV channel RTL -TVI and fight against leukemia, the first deadly childhood cancer .
What was the first step to complete this project?
The first thing was to ask permission to implement the project with the Department of internship and the school to which it is attached. Then I took contact with Gallimard to obtain information relevant to the project . I got in touch with a specialist who is related with the Antoine de Saint Exupéry heirs. That’s when , a few months later, I got the green light, and I launched the project!
Things then became more concrete ! How did you direct the students?
Students participating in the project were all enrolled in the boarding school . I worked with them in the evening study at boarding school . It is therefore logical that I suggested the idea. To chose the characters, each of the participants made a reading test , and depending on the ease or not to read, we determined the set of roles .
For the narrator , the students asked me to handle it. Indeed, it is an adult and I think it reassured the students that I can occasionally set the tone , even if it is not easy .
We went to Brussel, and had more than eight hours of footage . This was complicated, especially for Leo who did the voice of the Little Prince and had to stay present throughout the recording.
But it is a great experience , being in a professional studio for such a project . For students and for me it ‘s a great pride.
What benefits do they have withdrawn from this experience?
The students learned a lot. They discoverd the book, to start , which is a great wealth. During playback, they learned to identify with different characters, questioned , tried to understand, the pictures proposed by Antoine de Saint- Exupéry.
Then they learned to read properly , they have to get into the skin of the character they embodied and take possession of their parts. It was sometimes very amusing. Then , with the experience in the recording studio, they were able to realize the difficulty of a real recording studio.
And you ?
Personally, I was impressed to see what young people of a dozen years were able to do for others. They knew that the money would go to charity, but they immediately said yes to the project. Once again , I realized that we can have confidence in these young people, who will be the adults of tomorrow. I was also very proud to work with motivated teenagers . It made me work my patience because multiple readings of the book became some very long night. In the studio, I loved working with my voice . This is one of the most rewarding professional experience I have experienced to date. «
The CD produced by students is currently for sale and available at the Athénée Royal d’Arlon . You can also find it at merchants in the region. Finally, the boarding team accepts Internet orders : internat.ara @ gmail.com
Télévie is an association / campaign conducted annually by the Belgian TV channel RTL- TVI. It takes place throughout Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (in partnership with RTL Luxembourg). Its purpose is to raise funds to fight against leukemia and cancer.
For several weeks , various objects are sold to benefit the Televie . In addition, throughout Belgium , many activities are organized ( Rally , meals , parties, hiking … ) .
End of April , the chain holds great closing ceremony broadcast live and Belgians can fulfill their pledges.
More info here .
At present , the project has not reported profits Televie . We count on you to exceed the threshold of 360 CDs, and help research against leukemia .
Learn more here .