Sassenach Spotlight: Vicki Johnston from North Carolina
Sassenach Spotlight is an Outlander Cast blog post highlighting Outlander fans worldwide. This month we shine the Sassenach Spotlight on Vicki Johnston.
Watching Outlander is memorable for so many reasons, from the characters and the actors who bring them to life, to the talented team behind the camera who make it all possible. Yet, one element of the show arguably sets the mood and emotions of Diana Gabaldon‘s world more than any other — the music. Bear McCreary has orchestrated a melodically magnificent score, powerful enough to drive viewers and listeners alike to discover more about the traditional Scottish music in which the soundtrack takes inspiration from. One of these viewers includes this month’s spotlighted Sassenach, Vicki Johnston.
A musician, dancer, and teacher from North Carolina, Johnston was inspired by Outlander to add the bodhrán, a Celtic frame drum, to her list of playable instruments. And out of the over 300 songs in her repertoire, many include pieces from McCreary’s score. “During waking hours, or to lull me to sleep, I love keeping his music close by,” Johnston says. “From the quiet moments to the rousing chases, the score is utterly fitting and envelops the listener.” Her hope is to one day attend a nearby Highland Games, just like Brianna and Roger, and take her love for music and Outlander along with her.
Here’s a little bit more about Vicki and the part she plays in the Outlander symphony!
Favorite Outlander Character: That’s tough. I think Jamie because of his loyalty, humor, and the way he accepted Claire and her wild time travel story unconditionally. He is fiercely devoted to her, but remains his own man with his own opinions, despite being coupled with a headstrong woman like Claire.
Favorite Outlander Villain: Black Jack Randall. You can’t get much more evil than that guy!
Favorite Book/Season: The first book/season still has to be my favorite. The country of Scotland was a character unto itself and all the inhabitants of the story were brand new.
Are you a book reader and/or show watcher?: Started with season 1, then began reading the books.
What was your first experience with Outlander?: I saw the Starz promo for the show at least three months prior to air and put it in my calendar. It looked very intriguing! Eventually, I even got my sister and niece hooked on the show, too! I have been gradually purchasing the books so I can read them during each #Droughtlander. In addition to adding lots of plaid to my wardrobe, I have the DVD sets for each season, jewelry, and knit wear. Like most fans, I have definitely done my part to spread the word about our love for this special saga!
In what way has Outlander inspired you, both personally and creatively? I have learned even more about Scottish history, fallen more in love with plaid clothing, finally took up playing the bodhrán, and spend more time watching Starz than ever before! I have listened to all of the podcasts from Mary & Blake and enjoy their chemistry and passion for the show. I have never had a story take hold of me with the intensity that Outlander has.
How do you share your love for Outlander?: My husband watches with me on each second viewing. I have added my sister and niece to the viewership as well. Anytime an Outlander event comes up, I always make sure to notify those who are close enough to go! I post on Facebook sometimes, too, to spread the word about the show.
Any special/fun Outlander moments you want to share?: Though I’m too far away to attend, my niece in New York City has shared her Outlander experiences with me each time she is able to go to a screening or an Outlander meeting. She even brought me a tote bag and perfume from her experience at New York Comic Con! It is great feeling the instant kinship that one feels with others who are Outlander fans!
Lastly, what are you looking forward to in upcoming books/seasons/events?: I attempt to finish reading each book right before each season begins. I just look forward to seeing how the Fraser saga gets woven throughout history. As an older woman, I also love seeing how the story presents an older and more mature love as it deepens and mellows.
Are you, or is someone you know, a true Obsessenach? Click this link to apply to be featured in next month’s Sassenach Spotlight!