Auctioneer Chant

Overall Project Description:


The auctioneer chant is a remarkable skill. These professional wordsmiths have trained in such a way that merges the genres of speech, poetry, and rhyme into a practice that deserves the attention of a documentary film. I propose to create a short film that profiles one auctioneer. An interview with an auctioneer that will  explain and showcase his/her talent is essential. I am interested in talking with a neuroscientist, cognitive scientist, or linguist about the ways in which the brain and speech are trained to produce this type of speech.

Relationship to General Topic of Mythology:

I am interested in the figure and the speech of the auctioneer as a myth in contemporary society. I am interested in considering why such speech has evolved as a mode for producing high-value exchanges in a public setting. Certainly, it engenders a feeling of excitability, and I am interested in asking an auctioneer to offer his/her thoughts on the psychology of the buyer.

Description of Component for Theatrical Presentation:

This piece will be cut into a short film at the requested length for the purpose of public presentation.

Description of Component for Print Publication: I would suggest we produce a transcript of an auctioneer’s chant. I would like to design and produce a limited edition archival print of this speech that could then be auctioned off.

online online

Description of Component for Online: A video still with a project description. Perhaps, a very short youtube trailer?

Project Team: Include specific roles and number of participants necessary to execute

I would suggest that we try to maintain relatively traditional production roles, as this will make the requirements for collaboration a little more clear. I’m comfortable playing a number of roles in this project, however, I think outlining the process would be helpful for making this relatively fast turn-around possible.


Producer: Pills


Editor: Schedule:

Pre-production- I will allow for 2 weeks of pre-production. Securing the commitment of an auctioneer subject will be essential during this time. Expert interviews can be debated.

Production- 2 weeks – Interview, try to coordinate shooting a live auction with subject auctioneer

Post-production- 2 weeks

Technology Requirements:

1-2 HD video cameras

online Audio recording device,

editing tools, Buy

2 thoughts on “Auctioneer Chant

  1. Anonymous

    Your project seems to point to some of the most puzzling—and mesmerizing qualities of the human voice and its powerful effects on other people´s minds and hearts. You might want to browse these: MILTON H. ERICKSON & ERNEST ROSSI Collected papers…; Tone of Voice and Mind: The Connections between Intonation, Emotion, Cognition, and Consciousness By NORMAN D. COOK John Benjamins, Amsterdam: 2002 and comments by KLAUS R. SCHERER DAVID SANDER. You might also try interviewing JEFF ZEIG.
    The neural response to emotional prosody, as revealed by functional magnetic resonance imaging, Rachel L.C. Mitchell ,Rebecca Elliott Martin Barry, Alan Cruttenden & Peter W.R. Woodruff , Neuropsychologia 41 (2003) 1410–1421.
    Best luck

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