Lisa Sniderman (aka Aoede) writes "quirky folk pop" for teens and tweens.
She has composed award-winning musicals that use classical mythological characters to tell stories with current-day application for secondary school-aged readers.
First she created audio books by composing music and working with a production team to record the music and sound effects that accompany the stories.
Then she began polishing the scripts so that youth theater groups could rehearse and perform staged readings of the show.
I was able to attend a staged reading of What Are Dreams Made Of? by the San Carlos Children's Theater in the summer just after we moved to California.
Soon after I began collaborating with Lisa to write the musical score for her musicals so that theater groups have the possibility of rehearsing to live accompaniment and have the written music as another tool for learning the singing parts.
I have spent a good part of 2017 working on the score for her next book, Do You Believe in Magic? which was just completed!
Working with another songwriter is eye-opening, exciting and sometimes confusing as I seek to be true to her vision for her music. Being neighbors in San Mateo makes this partnership an ongoing one as we establish lines of communication and trust with lots of good humor thrown in.
One thing that amazes me is how Lisa, who doesn't read musical notation, has such clear pitch memory for the songs she composes, that even when we are listening to the published recording, she can say, "I know they recorded it that way, but here is what I intended!"
And again, when I finished working on this collaboration, I found my own creative juices had been stewing and were all set to stir up and serve and I am delighted with what I've been able to produce just in the past month!
So, I suggest, if you ever feel like your creativity has dried up...go collaborate and support someone else's project and see what happens for yours.