Month: March 2009

AFRO REGGAE

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Affro Reggae is a Brazilian cultural group from Rio de Janeiro. Forged out of the police massacre of 21 people in their local community in 1993, they have gone on to establish an international profile for their pioneering work in taking young people out of the drug/gang culture of Rio de Janeiro’s favelas (shantytowns).

Between the years 1987 and 2001, 467 minors were murdered in Israel and Palestine. During the same period, in one city in Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, 3,937 were murdered. There are over 600 favelas in Rio, one of the most notorious is Vigario Geral, the birth place of AfroReggae.

The favelas are a place of grinding poverty, drug dealing and violent death where young people often see a short life in the drug gangs as their only path. But the favelas are also reservoirs of ingenuity and creativity. AfroReggae seeks to provide alternatives for young people.

The main band has a touring schedule that has recently included India, South Africa, China, USA, and Europe presenting their amazing stage show to sell out audiences. They have created a brand that helps to fund their activity. Grupo Cultural AfroReggae now runs over 70 projects across a range of disciplines including music, dance & theatre, circus, and radio & new media with over 3,000 young people in Rio de Janeiro. They also provide social support mechanisms for young people, guiding many into employment in Rio’s mainstream.

AfroReggae balances the impact of high-quality performance with the importance of arts as a social process.

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EXXON VALDEZ 20 YEARS LATER

On March 24, 1989 the oil tanker Exxon Valdez ran aground at Alaska’s Bligh Reef, spewing 11 million gallons of crude into the rich fishing waters of the Prince William Sound. The legal and environmental repercussions are still felt today.

The spill killed hundreds of thousands of birds and other marine animals, inflicting environmental injuries that have not fully recovered, according to numerous scientific studies.

An estimated 21,000 gallons of crude linger, researchers say. 

The remaining oil will take decades and possibly centuries to disappear. (From Fox News)

PRINCESS OF NEBRASKA AT THE FILMOTECA DE ANDALUCIA

The Princess of Nebraska  follows a young Chinese woman who calls herself Sasha through an intense few days in San Francisco. To anyone who asks, Sasha, played by Ling Li, says she wants “to see the city,” and Wayne Wang’s camera takes in its neighborhoods with unshowy affection. But there is a lot more going on than tourism.

Sasha, who has spent the previous months as an exchange student in Omaha, is pregnant from an encounter back home in Beijing. She has come to California to figure out what to do and to find Boshen (Brian Danforth), an American activist who had also, in China, been in love with Yang, the mysterious opera student who is the father of Sasha’s child. (from the New york Times)

two sessions: 18.00 and 20.30 at the Filmoteca de Andalucía. In English with subtitles