Described as Paisley’s Untold Story, The Sma’ Shot Musical is an ambitious feature length musical packed with great characters and a stunning soundtrack
It is incredible that the town of Paisley has celebrated 'Sma' Shot day' since 1856 and the story has never been told before in books, stage, documentary or film. You can help change all that.
What We Need and What You Get
We have been funded by Renfrewshire Council to research the history of The Sma’ Shot Day, write a script and rearrange and compose music for the soundtrack. Now we have a great story and 18 of the best Scottish, Irish and English traditional songs there is all rearranged for today’s audience.
We need the extra funds to create sets, make unique, era appropriate costumes, pay for editing and pay some production costs. In return for your contribution, we are offering a range of exciting perks,
We believe this project brings something new to Scottish film and TV, while creating jobs in an industry that has been decimated by the impact of the global pandemic. We want to make something that gives everyone involved in the film pride in their local community, job opportunities and for the many young people involved, a unique experience working with a professional film crew.
You can be part of; -
- The first Paisley film made fully in Paisley.
- The first film about the Sma’ Shot story.
- The first film using a full soundtrack of Traditional Folk Music.
It will be filmed on location in Paisley using historic sites and buildings such as: Sma Shot Cottages, Tannahill’s Cottage, The Abbey, Oakshaw, Espedair Street, Craigie Linn, The Hamills, Forbes Place, George Street and John Neilson School.
AN INSPIRATIONAL STORY
Set in 1856 the story is the true events of a 19th Century strike that occurred in Paisley, Scotland between the local Weavers and the town’s elite. Paisley was a famous Weaver’s centre producing the intricate patterned shawls that became the world-famous Paisley Pattern. The Sma’ Shot is a unique insight into one of British history's most pivotal workers’ rights events in Britain which has become the world’s longest celebration of workers’ rights – Sma’ Shot Day held in Paisley on the first Saturday in July.
The music that forms the backdrop to this unique story features the best Scottish, Irish and English traditional music including classic and timeless songs from Robert Burns, Robert Tannahill, Lady Nairn, John Sim, Adam Skirving and other folk favourites. The music has been rearranged and although still has its traditional roots it has a more contemporary feel. This new modern twist gives the tunes more power, emotion and punch. The songs include; Wild Mountain Thyme, Ae Fond Kiss, The Work O’ the Weavers, The Four Loom Weaver, The Dundee Weaver, The Calton Weaver, Bonnie Heilan Laddie, Ye Jacobites my Name, Black Velvet Band, Kelvingrove and more.
The story is gritty, tragic and powerful yet it has its fun moments as strong characters clash heads. Set in an amazing backdrop of old Paisley the viewer finds out why Paisley has a place in the history of social change in Britain.
Local weaver Robert Campbell, a proud family man has had enough of being treated unfairly and poorly paid for his work. He confronts the bosses to ask for more money for the work he isn’t being paid for which was using extra thread called the Sma’ Shot. The intricate patterns of the Paisley weavers work were held together by an unseen strong thread called the Sma' Shot. This secret stitch held together Paisley's famous shawls and without the stitch the patterns would come apart. The weavers had to pay for the thread but the fact that it was unseen the paymasters either didn’t understand it or they simply didn’t want to pay the weavers more money than they wanted to.
Robert is a quiet man and doesn’t see himself as a leader, but the townsfolk do, and they trust him, so they ask him to be their spokesman. He accepts and his decision changes him and the weavers’ lives forever. After being refused again and again he calls the weavers to action. He can’t take any more pressure from the town’s establishment to accept less than what he thinks they are worth, so he rallies the weavers to strike.
The weavers fight against the power of the establishment and as things get violent and the strike takes hold, it become tough for everyone. It divides families and the people of the town.
While most of the weavers insist on nonviolence, others think they should show their strength by getting armed.
Amidst all this his daughter falls in love with a young man. He has just been promoted to work in the boss’s office and he soon finds himself in the middle of a difficult situation. William is asked to keep an eye on the key players who are causing the bosses trouble and to report back. The family is torn apart and loyalty becomes a huge issue. Violence, death and mayhem hit the town and not only has a financial battle begun but personal ones too.
Tempers flare and emotions run high, and a certain courtesy prevails. This civility is fragile and at any minute things can go wrong. Should the Corks offer modest improvements in the payment for the shawls in the hopes of quieting the fury? Offer nothing? Or should they respond with force?
There are constant clashes and beatings in the streets, the pubs and other public places. Things begin to get nasty and it all heads to a final confrontation. All’s well that ends well but a heavy price has been paid.
Jon Cuthbertson – Robert Campbell Weaver and Father
Jon has over 20 years of experience performing in pantomimes, musicals, comedies and dramas in theatres around Glasgow such as The Kings, Theatre Royal, The Tramway, The Crawford and many more. Jon has worked as a performer for RATS Theatre Company for several years and as such has performed in festivals throughout the UK. Jon continues to play an active role in theatre administration and works as a theatre critic. Recently, Jon completed an intensive stage combat course in London and is currently co-ordinating stage fights for children's pantomime. He is a Director of Punch Productions
Karen Herbison – Morag Campbell Weaver and Mother
Karen has over 30 years’ experience of performing, directing and choreographing in a variety of genres including musical, comedy and drama. She has produced and toured original and established pieces of work. She is highly experienced in demanding principal roles.
She is the founder and Director of Punch Productions and H- Arts
Her play “Say You Love Me”. Originally written and performed as dinner-theatre, it has since enjoyed several productions and casts, West Coast dates, full house/standing ovation status at the Edinburgh Fringe and Off (off)-Broadway, New York.
Zoe Clark – Mhari Campbell Daughter
Sara is a young actress recently and a rising star from Starlight Music Theatre in Paisley. She has landed top roles in productions since a young age. She is a very talented singer.
Ryan James Miller – Thomas Campbell Son
Ryan is a young actor who graduated from West College Scotland. He has landed roles at the Edinburgh Fringe, The Bungalow Musical. He took the Acting For Camera Course at The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and has a diploma in Acting for Stage and Screen from Acting Coach Scotland
Kai Ross – William Sneddon Mhari’s Boyfriend
Kai is a promising young actor who is getting a lot of attention and great reviews. Recently graduated from West College Scotland and about to start
Colin McGowan – Davy Maxwell Weaver
Colin graduated from Motherwell College with a BA in Acting. He has experience on stage, in serious dramas, musicals and film/tv work. He also is a juggler and has stage combat experience. He is a baritone singer.
Scott Sutherland – Andrew Gilmour Weaver
Scott is a highly rated actor and singer. He has performed all over the country in stage musicals. He has had lead roles in many amateur productions.
Gill McGowan - Annie Dunn Barmaid in Terrace Tavern
Gill is a professional actress, singer and presenter. She has performed in stage plays and musicals for over 15 years.
Roy McGregor - George Forbes Cork
Roy is and Director, Actor and Theatre Creative. He studied drama at University College Northampton
Sabrina Mandulu - Grace Christie Barmaid in Terrace Tavern
Sabrina is a Graduate from Glasgow Kelvin College, and then went on to Queen Margaret University and Napier University to study acting. She is a very successful professional singer and recording artist. She is part of the band Kodak Ghosts who supported Paolo Nutini at Paisley Town hall.
THE PRODUCTION TEAM
Director Tommy McGrory
Tommy has over 40 years’ experience as organising International Events. He has written and directed 3 successful runs of I Was There at the SECC and The Bungalow at Paisley Town Hall.
He is the creator and writer of the Sma’ Shot Strike story and has assembled a professional production crew to pivot the original story from a stage play to a film.
Co – Director and Technical Advisor Duncan McDonald
In a long career, he has directed events in more countries than the CIA but with much less collateral damage. He has worked on many programmes for BBC including Celtic Connections, Documentaries and drama feature length Billy Connolly
Director of Photography Craig McKirdy
20 years Director of Photography Scots Squad 6 series of International Bannan serial drama won a bafta for STV BBC Documentary Still Game Dark Nature award winning Billy Connolly Currently working on 1 Newton Avenue Live music including Celtic Connections.
Sound Engineer Duncan Reid
Duncan has worked for big budget projects and 'Celtic Connections', 'Trad Winners' & 'Port'. He is a Football multi-cam sound recordist. He is a Director at Pro Sounds supplying industry leading sound equipment and professional crew for festivals, gigs, film and tv.
Lighting Richie Miller
16 Years Gaffer at BBC Scotland working across all areas including comedies, dramas and documentaries. Has worked with small and large crews and beginning to work on larger scale projects. Has worked on features, small budget short films, commercials and web content.
Film Editor Martin Heron
Martin is a producer, director and video editor with nearly a decade of experience across the industry. He has worked on commercial promotions, corporate communications, creative music videos and award-winning feature documentaries. His work has been broadcast on CNN, BBC and STV.
West College Scotland Film and TV Students
Assistant Director, assistant lighting, assistant sound, production assistants and other supporting production posts will be supplied by the college.
The college crew will be supervised and assisted by the tutors of the Media, TV and Radio department.
Assistant Film Editor Josh Farmer
Production Head Alan McEwan
Production Assistant Elaine Campbell
Wardrobe Manager June Young
Wardrobe Assistant Student
Script Writer Tommy McGrory
Co Script Writer Karen Herbision
Music Arrangements Euan Malloch and Jamie McGrory
Researchers Melissa Hempkin and Nathalie Rosset
Music Director Jamie McGrory
Recording Sound Tracks Jamie Mcgrory
Musicians Euan Malloch – Guitars
Jamie McGrory - Drums
Marcus Cordock – Bass
Chris Russell – Keyboard and Piano
Fiona Hamilton – Fiddle
Chris Waite – Pipes and Whistle
Marissa Waite – Bodhran
ABOUT LOUD n PROUD
Loud n Proud is now in its 20th year. The impact Loud n Proud has had on young people who have been part of the organisation has been immense while their part in the local music scene has been pivotal.
They have created a place for talented, hardworking young musicians and performers to thrive.
They work an incredible mix of young people. Several have won National titles while most just love to make music in a safe and inspiring environment. The high number of students that have become full time professional players, teachers, technicians and music managers is a testament to the high-quality output of their work with young musicians.
Their work with disadvantaged communities has had an amazing impact on young people's confidence, social practice, concentration, creativity and general outlook on life. They give their young students the confidence and encouragement to achieve their dreams whatever they may be.
Loud n Proud has won Britain’s Young Drummer of the Year twice, Best Rock Band – Live and Unsigned UK, Winners of Quest for Talent and finalists Rock da Mic UK.
Their work in the community has been awarded with the following:
Community Champions Award – Paisley Partnership
Community Music Award – University of the West of Scotland
Renfrewshire Provost’s Certificate of Distinction for Community Work
Renfrewshire Provost’s Community Award
Police Scotland Chief Constable Award
This project will help young disadvantaged people get experience and training in: Acting, Camera Work, Sound Recording, Film Editing and Music through working in a real ‘hands on’ approach with professionals. By being part of the production crew, they will be an important part of the projects success and they will no doubt help them to reach their full potential and give them the confidence to apply for a further education course or improve their chances of employment.