The African Diaspora International Film Festival 2o23 is a Harlem-based film festival about the experience of people of color around the world.
African Diaspora International Film Festival 2023
The African Diaspora International Film Festival 2023 digs into the theme of “Music & Soul in the African Diaspora” as a force for social change. It’s screening American, Brazilian, British, Cuban, French, Guadeloupean, Malian and Peruvian music films at Colombia University Teachers College in Morningside Heights, Manhattan; Friday-Sunday, April 28-30, 2023. $15 per film. nyadiff.org
This is the film festival’s lineup. These are really interesting films. We want to see them all.
Cinema Tropical, one of America’s leading presenters of Latin film, and ArtMattan Films, a publisher of African Diaspora films are part of this.
Mahmoud Zemmouri’s 1997 French comic drama, “100% Arabica,” tells the story of a French mayor who pays the imam of a local mosque to calm the streets of his rough immigrant neighborhood outside Paris. Things calm down, but not because of the imam. The whole neighborhood is getting down to Algerian rai music, a blend of Arab and hip-hop traditions. 🇫🇷 🇩🇿
Friday, April 28, 2023 at 6pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
All The World’s A Stage
Nirmal Chander’s 2008 Indian film “All the World’s a Stage,” tells the story of a marginalized Sidi musical group who brought their Sufi song and dance traditions from East Africa to India’s west coast in the 13th century. As the group gets famous, they must decide whether to stay traditional or fuse with modern traditions ~ all while trying to survive. 🇪🇹 🇮🇳
Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 6pm. $15. music-and-soul.eventive.org
The Black Mozart in Cuba
The Stephanie James and Steve James 2008 documentary, “The Black Mozart in Cuba,” tells the story of a Cuban celebration of Le Chevalier de St Georges (1745-1799). He was a Senegalese Guadeloupean born into slavery, a polymath genius in classical music, fencing and the military arts who rose to fortune and fame, but had his legacy buried by Napoleon’s return to human slaving. 🇬🇵 🇨🇺
Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 2:25pm. $15. music-and-soul.eventive.org
Dancing the Twist in Bamako
Robert Guérdiguian’s 2021 French film, “Dancing the Twist in Bamako,” tells the story of a young Malian couple in love, inspired by the freedoms and possibilities of their newly independent country, in rock and roll, even though freedom is harder than the dream. 🇲🇱
Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 7:30pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
Music Pictures New Orleans
Ben Chace’s 2022 documentary, “Music Pictures New Orleans,” takes a backstage look at New Orleans music legends who once ruled the music world, but our now in the 80s. Irma Thomas is “The Soul Queen of New Orleans.” The Tremé Brass Band is a fixture of New Orleans jazz. Little Freddie King is one of the last original bluesmen still playing. Ellis Marsalis is the head of the Marsalis family of jazz musicians. 🇺🇸
Sunday, April 30, 2023 at 6:30pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
Natal da Portela
Paulo César Saraceni’s 1988 drama “Natal da Portela” tells the story of a young artist who couldn’t play or dance well, but became one of the main composers of Portela, one of the great samba schools of Rio de Janeiro. 🇧🇷
Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 3:50pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
Fantastic Negrito: Have You Lost Your Mind Yet?
In Francisco Núñez Capriles and Yvan Iturriaga’s 2022 documentary, “Fantastic Negrito: Have You Lost Your Mind Yet?,” R&B singer Fantastic Negro faces his own demons in the middle of a mental health crisis in his Oakland community. That’s a really good question. 🇺🇸
Sunday, April 30, 2023 at 2pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
St Louis Blues
Allen Reisner’s 1958 drama tells the story of W.C. Handy, “The Father of the Blues,” who took the root of American popular music from the street, all the way to Carnegie Hall. It stars a cast of legends: Nat “King” Cole, Eartha Kitt, Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald, Mahalia Jackson, Ruby Dee, Juano Hernandez and Pearl Bailey. 🇺🇸
Sunday, April 30, 2023 at 4pm. $15. music-and-soul-eventive.org
The Story of Lovers Rock
Menelik Shabazz’ 2011 documentary, “Lovers Rock,” tells the story of the 70s-80s generation of young Black British men and women who found comfort and identity in the form of reggae known as Lovers Rock that went global with bands like UB40. 🇬🇧
Friday, April 28, 2023 at 8pm. $15. music-and-soul.eventive.org
Susana Baca, Memoria Viva
Mark Dixon’s 2003 documentary, “Susana Baca, Memoria Viva,” tells the story of legendary Afro-Peruvian lando singer Susana Baca and her Instituto Negrocontinuo in Lima, Peru. In the Latin world, she is a great champion of African Diaspora culture.
Many people think of Peru as Inca and it was. But we had plantations on the coast in the colonial period, and the capital Lima was once considered an African Diaspora city. The same is true up in the Andes in Bolivia where a lot of African Diaspora culture has been absorbed. It’s present in the Carnival dances. 🇵🇪
Saturday, April 29, 2023 at 1pm. $15. music-and-soul.eventive.org
New York: The Secret African City
To fully embrace Latin identity is to embrace all of our Indigenous, European and African roots (with Jewish, Arab and Asian flavors too). We may or may not look African, but we are. All humans are.
When you dig down into the roots, it’s surprising how much of our culture, both as Latins and as Americans of the United States, originates in the African Diaspora. In Central and South America, you get more Indigenous influences, but in the Caribbean and North America, the culture is strongly African. And everywhere in the Americas, Indigenous and African mixed together. We may read one way or the other, but there is a lot of mixing.
Yale University art historian Dr. Robert Farris Thompson called New York City “The Secret African City.” He also said the popular music and dances of the United States come from the African Diaspora. He is 100% right.