Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Life's for Sharing -- UK T-Mobile commercials

I enjoy watching videos on YouTube.  I find them fun and entertaining and there's such a large variety that it's never really boring.  I usually watch fun videos, like the baby that dances to the Beyonce "Single Ladies" video (I never get tired of watching that), or music videos, like Lady Gaga's "Born This Way".  I even subscribe to video channels, which is a great way to keep track of newly uploaded videos from some of my favorite celebs and amateur film makers.

Well, one of the Channels I subscribe to is Life's for Sharing, which is the T-Mobile UK ad campaign. In case you haven't seen these Life's for Sharing videos, they are very creative.  They involve a flash mob style of activity, usually large groups of people spontaneously joining large dance numbers.  There are some fun ones.  I have two favorites: T-Mobile Welcome Back which was shot at Heathrow Airport and The T-Mobile Royal Wedding, which debuted in the UK about a week before the Royal Wedding of Price William to (now) Princess Catherine (there's also one that takes place at a train station in London, but I don't think it's Victoria Station; that video is a fun one too!).  In addition to the actual videos, there are a lot of uploads from Life's for Sharing of behind the scenes footage, showing how they put the singers and musical performers and dancers in the two videos I mentioned above together.  The behind the scenes videos are almost as fun to watch as the actual ads.  I really wish T-Mobile did ads like this here in the USA, I would completely audition to be in one; it just looks like so much fun!

This post is specifically about the Welcome Back video.  It makes me cry.  I love it, so I watch it a lot and every time, at the end, I cry.

The way Heathrow Airport is set up, all people waiting for disembarking passengers are located in a specific area outside the security doors.  Similar to here in the US, if you don't have a ticket you can't go past security.  Well, anyway, there are a lot of people waiting for their loved ones, friends, etc to appear.  The first thing you see is a young couple greeting one another and a blond woman with a single white rose approaches the couple singing "At Last" and suddenly a few other people are making sounds like instruments (a violin, an upright bass, drums) and this couple is serenaded.  That's the beginning and it just continues to escalate.  There are singers and music performers of all ages and races, and they approach disembarking passengers and airline staff, singing a wide variety of songs.  The last song is "Welcome Back" and images begin to fly across the screen of passengers greeting their loved ones.  More and more people begin to join in and clap for the performers and there are hugs and kisses as people greet each other.  That makes me cry.  I cry the moment these performers break out into that last song and I can't help it.  I just get that stinging feeling in my eyes and tears begin to flow.  I'm not sure what it is about that song, or possibly that segment of this video.  I smile and tap my feet to all of the other songs and I enjoy the expressions on the faces of people as they are greeted and sung to, but "Welcome Back" hits me, it hits my heart.  I just get so emotional.

I think it is wonderful when passengers are met by their friends or family when they get through security at an airport.  It's a great feeling to see someone waiting for you as you head to baggage claim.  I, personally, have not had that kind of experience, a loved one waiting to greet me on the way to baggage claim, but I do smile every time people call out to a passenger who has just made his/her way to baggage claim.  I definitely love when family and friends are at airports to greet their military loved ones who are returning from the Middle East, oh that just tugs at my heart strings.  I think something like the Welcome Home video being actively done at airports where military service men and women are arriving would be so great!  These men and women are fighting a very long war and, even though I do think many of them know how much the American people appreciate the work they do, I think being sung to and welcomed home by a crowd of singers and music performers would just go that extra mile to really let them know "Thank you for your service to our country".

That's not why I cry when I see the video though, at least I don't think that's why.  These songs are fun and poignant and the expressions of disembarking passengers are priceless, yet I cry during "Welcome Home".  I don't really have anyone to welcome home, I guess.  I don't have a loved one in the military who is returning home after serving in The Desert.  I no longer get to welcome my dad home from his trips.  So, who am I going to welcome back?  I don't know.  I just think the last segment of the video is so beautiful and heartwarming, I have to cry.

I really recommend the Life's for Sharing videos (all of them) but here's the link to the Welcome Back video filmed at Heathrow Airport in October 2010 -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NB3NPNM4xgo (hopefully it plays for you).

~ TLN
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