Last April, as the animators and creative teams at Big Idea Productions were in the final stretch of Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie, Music Director Kurt Heinecke was finishing the score. Christianity Today assistant online editor Todd Hertz spoke with Heinecke just a month before the former school band director was to record the score with a 50-piece orchestra.
What's your history with Big Idea?
I've been working here for nine years. Those first three or four years I was working both here and at Park Community Church. At that time, I was full time at the church and part time here. I didn't have an office. I only worked out of my home.
I remember way back in the beginning a lot of times Phil and I just talking about the vision that he had. I'm more of a nuts and bolts detail person, so it was weird to hear his vision and ideas for what could become of this. I think in his heart of hearts none of this surprises him. And so it's easy to get caught up in that and and do whatever you needed to do. So that's how I got started.
Our very first space, I mean it was just this little whole in the wall. It was a little store front and they didn't even have a sound booth. We had big mattresses and tarps and blankets to cover the sound. Late at night one night, I borrowed a tuba so we could do the theme song. I intentionally put those mistakes in there because Larry (a character who in the videos' credits plays the tuba) would make mistakes. I could have played it better.
What are differences between then and now?
When we started, we had no money for equipment. I did the first couple of shows without even a computer. I was on a keyboard workstation. And then as we got more budget and more time, then I started adding live instruments. But it was ...