2015 AFF SUMMER SERIES SCHEDULE

Movies? Check! Live Music? Check! Free? Check! The Summer Series is back and we at AFF cannot wait to welcome you and yours to various NYC venues, as we celebrate the summertime with wonderful programs like “CINEMA UNDER THE STARS” set throughout various NYC Parks, and our “FAMILY DAY CELEBRATION” on the beautiful Governor’s Island.

AFRICA 411

Wednesday, June 17, 7:00pm

LOCATION Staten Island Arts – Cultural Lounge (10 Ferry Terminal Drive – Inside the Staten Island Terminal)

RAIN VENUE Above Location

ART EXHIBITION: Images and family relics from Staten Island’s three largest West African communities (Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone) March 26 – July 12, 2015

FILMS Shorts Program:

Beleh (Eka Christa Assam, Cameroon, 2013, 26min.) 

 Beleh still

Set in a small village at the foot of Mount Fako in Cameroon, Beleh examines the relationship between Ekema and his heavily pregnant wife, Joffi. The difficulty she faces in her first pregnancy is made worse by the petulant and selfish demands of her irate and uncompromising husband. Things come to a head when one morning, the situation mysteriously changes in the village and there’s a total role reversal between the sexes. Ekema (who’s the only one who seems to be aware of the change) gets to experience a day as a pregnant man and his experiences throw a whole new light on his view of Joffi’s feelings.

Curse of an Addict (Lovinsa Kavuma, Zanzibar/Tanzania, 2013, 25min.)

curseofaddict

In Zanzibar, Seif, a 28-year-old heroin addict believes he is cursed. In a battle to be free from a life where he contracted HIV, Seif seeks help from a Shiek. In a spiritual exorcism, the curse from his past is conjured up. Having confronted his demons, only time will tell whether Seif can lead a clean life as a true Muslim.

Soko Sonko (Ekwa Msangi, Kenya/USA, 2014, 22min.)

 soko_sonko

When her mom gets sick, Kibibi’s dad must take her to the market to get her hair braided before school begins. Soko Sonko is a hilarious, fish-out-of-water roller-coaster of a journey, about a well-intended dad who goes where no man has gone before… because only women have been there.

Art Exhibition: Have you ever wondered what a cultural/historical archive would look like if the communities featured in it designed it themselves? What images and family relics would you choose to tell your story 50 years from now? How might an archive be involved in social change? The Cultural Feedback Project (CFP) explores such questions as it represents a new genre of community-based archival practice. Cultural Feedback Project (CFP) is community-driven folk life archive that is led and curated by local heritage bearers from Staten Island’s three largest West African communities (Ghanaian, Liberian and Sierra Leonean).

Produced in collaboration with Staten Island Arts and African Story Network.

Post-screening discussion with Filmmaker Ekwa Msangi and African Film Festival, Inc. director Mahen Bonetti.


FIRST FRIDAYS

Friday, July 3, 6:00pm

LOCATION Joyce Kilmer Park, Bronx (161st Street and Grand Concourse)

RAIN VENUE The Bronx Museum of the Arts – 2nd Floor’s North Wing, 1040 Grand Concourse

LIVE PERFORMANCE Tuelo & Her Cousins + DJ Asho

FILM White Wedding (Jann Turner, South Africa, 2009, 92min.)

white wedding

Devoted groom-to-be Elvis sets out on a 1,800-kilometer South African road trip in order to give his fiancée, Ayanda, a European-style dream wedding, but finds that getting there won’t be easy thanks to his best friend Tumi and a wandering English doctor named Rose.

Meanwhile, as Ayanda begins to question Elvis’ commitment, her opinionated mother weighs in with her own thoughts about choosing European tradition over African tradition, and a handsome old boyfriend shows up with a suspicious agenda.

Performer Bio: Tuelo Minah is Tswana from the countryside of South Africa where she grew up singing in the fields of her family’s farm. Minah’s voice has graced Central Park SummerStage, Carnegie Hall, Late Night with David Letterman, the Blue Note, and the Brooklyn Academy of Music, to name a few. She was the music director for Ndebele Funeral which won the Overall Excellence Award – Best Play at the 2013 Fringe Festival NYC. Tuelo & Her Cousins, her most meaningful project to date, is her musical family that explores and brings to life her original songs.

Performer Bio: DJ Asho, Ariel Fernández Díaz, a Havana-born DJ, is undoubtedly a man on a mission. An internationally renowned cultural critic, Hip Hop historian, journalist, essayist and event organizer, Ariel has distinguished himself as a leader and advocate of Cuban youth culture and social-cultural movements. On top of that he continues to demonstrate his vision, drive, and love for Hip-Hop and the arts as vehicles for social change.

Produced in collaboration with the Bronx Museum of the Arts and Asho Productions.


SUMMER OF MUSIC

Sunday, July 12, 6:30pm

LOCATION Jackie Robinson Park, Harlem (148th St. & Bradhurst Avenue) Lawn Chairs Permitted

RAIN VENUE The Maysles Cinema (343 Lenox Ave @ Between 127th and 128th Streets)

LIVE PERFORMANCE DJ Reborn

FILM The Amazing Nina Simone (Jeff L. Lieberman, USA, 2015, 110min.)

amazing nina simone

The Amazing Nina Simone reveals the real Nina Simone through over 50 intimate interviews with those who best knew the artistry and intentions of one of America’s true musical geniuses. The film follows Nina’s journey and traces Nina’s roots from her upbringing in segregated North Carolina and all the way to the South of France and the place where she finally found freedom.

Performer Bio:  DJ Reborn is a trailblazing international DJ, sound collage artist, hip hop theater musical director and arts educator. Reborn has a myriad of impressive credits to her career including her work as a DJ/creative writing mentor for teen girls at Urban Word NYC, touring DJ for Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam and has opened shows for The Roots and John Legend. In the art world she has worked artists Kara Walker, Wangheci Mutu and the legendary Carrie Mae Weems. She’s provided live soundscapes for activists Eve Ensler’s V-Day project and Howard Zinn’s Voices of a People. DJ Reborn continues to build a unique and dynamic resume that sets her apart from many in her field.

Produced in collaboration with the Maysles Cinema and Reel Harlem: The Historic Harlem Parks Film Festival.

Introductions by director Jeff L. Lieberman and Sam Waymon (Nina Simone’s brother and band member).


DESTINATION ROCKAWAY: PASSPORT INTERNATIONAL OUTDOOR FILM SERIES

Friday, July 31, 9:00pm

LOCATION Rockaway Community Garden, Queens (5803 Rockaway Beach Blvd, Rockaway)

RAIN VENUE Above Location (Indoors)

LIVE ACTIVITY Students and community members will participate in a pothole tour to map and identify areas in need of street repairs.

FILM Felix (Roberta Durrant, South Africa, 2013, 97min.)

FELIX.poster1

Described as “Billy Elliott with Cape jazz,” the film follows 14-year-old Felix as he dreams of becoming a saxophonist like his late father. When he leaves his township to take up a scholarship at an elitist private school, he defies his mother and turns to two aging members of his father’s old band to help him prepare for the school jazz concert.

Things are not easy at the new school for young Felix and he struggles to fit in with the other school boys and is bullied. He then finds a friend and bodyguard in Ricardo and a tutor in Samuel Pepys played by Joseph Hughes. Together the three form an unbreakable bond that exhibits what true friendship is.

Produced in collaboration with the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance and Queens Museum.


AFRICANISMO 9!

Friday, August 7, 6:00pm

LOCATION Joyce Kilmer Park, Bronx (161st Street and Grand Concourse)

RAIN VENUE The Bronx Museum of the Arts – 2nd Floor’s North Wing, 1040 Grand Concourse

LIVE PERFORMANCE Chino Pons and Grupo Irek + DJ Asho

FILM Major Leagues? (Ernesto Perez Zambrano, Cuba, 2013, 27min.) & Cuban Roots/Bronx Stories (Pam Sporn, Cuba/USA, 2000, 57min.)

bigleagues

Major Leagues? Profiles members of the Cuban National Women’s Baseball Team, who pursue their passion in a society filled with machismo and prejudice.

Cuban_Roots_Photo Courtesy of Pam Sporn

Cuban Roots/Bronx Stories highlights the historical journey of an Afro-Cuban family, from Jamaica, to Cuba, to the Bronx, revealing that the Cuban-American experience is more diverse, racially and ideologically, than we are often led to believe. Diana, Ruben, and Pablo reveal stories of growing political awareness, overcoming the dangers of the streets, and coming into their own as Afro-Latinos.

Performer Bio:  Singer, bandleader, composer, dancer and record producer Cuban-born Chino Pons is considered one of the leading New York City-based Cuban musicians. Growing up in an environment of traditional and Afro-Cuban music, among musicians and legendary dancers from 1940’s and 1950’s, had a great influence on him and inspired him to create music. Chino’s relatives gave him a solid foundation in Son Cubano music, and absorbing their knowledge of Rumba Guaguanco, Yambu, Columbia, Cha Cha Cha, Danzon, and Bolero gave him the desire to create a new, more modern, sound while still maintaining many elements of traditional Cuban music.

In 2007, he formed Grupo Irek with Hensy Perez, Tosso Hettinger and Heriberto Valentin, and made his first recording as a bandleader with them in 2008. Chino continues to perform live and is currently working on his next album, spreading his unique taken on classic Cuban music throughout the world. He recently founded Guanabacoa Records, a record label focusing on traditional Cuban Music.

Performer Bio:  DJ Asho, Ariel Fernández Díaz, a Havana-born, is undoubtedly a man on a mission. An internationally renowned cultural critic, Hip Hop historian, journalist, essayist and event organizer, Ariel has distinguished himself as a leader and advocate of Cuban youth culture and social-cultural movements. On top of that he continues to demonstrate his vision, drive, and love for Hip-Hop and the arts as vehicles for social change.

Produced in collaboration with the Bronx Museum of the Arts and Asho Productions.


KIDflix FILM FESTIVAL

kidflix

Fridays, August 7, 14, 21, 28 7:30pm

LOCATION Fulton Park, Brooklyn (Stuyvesant St. & Fulton St.)

RAIN VENUE The following Saturday night

FILMS:

August 7th
ANNIE 
(Will Gluck, USA, 2014, 118min.)
annie-2014

Ever since her parents left her as a baby, little Annie (Quvenzhané Wallis) has led a hard-knock life with her calculating foster mother, Miss Hannigan. However, all that changes when hard-nosed billionaire andmayoral candidate Will Stacks (Jamie Foxx) takes her in on the recommendation of his advisers (Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale). Stacks believes that he’s Annie’s guardian angel, but the plucky youngster’s confidence and sunny outlook may mean that Annie will save Will instead.

 

August 14th
HOME
(Tim Johnson, USA, 2015, 94min.)
home-dreamworks-animation

After a hive-minded alien race called the Boov conquer the Earth, they relocate the planet’s human population — all except for a little girl named Tip (Rihanna), who’s managed to hide from the aliens. When Tip meets a fugitive Boov called Oh (Jim Parsons), there’s mutual distrust. However, Oh is not like his comrades; he craves friendship and fun. As their distrust fades, the pair set out together to find Tip’s mother, but, unbeknown to them, the Gorg — enemies of the Boov — are en route.

 

August 22nd
THE GABBY DOUGLAS STORY
(Gregg Champion, USA, 2014, 86min.)
The-Gabby-Douglas-Story-3-Imani-Hakim-1024x682

Gymnast Gabby Douglas (Imani Hakim) makes personal sacrifices to train with coach Liang Chow (Brian Tee) and become an Olympic champion in 2012.

 

August 29th
THE WIZ
(Sidney Lumet, USA, 1978, 134min.)
the_wiz_2

Presented in collaboration with the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA), KIDflix guarantees four evenings of entertaining and educational films for kids and families with the grand finale of The Wiz (8/28), complete with a costume and dance contest! Come as your favorite Wiz character for the costume contest.

Produced in collaboration with the MoCADA.


Raíces- Rediscovered

Saturday, August 8, 7:00pm

LOCATION Garden of the United States Sierra Leone Association Community Center, Staten Island (141 Park Hill Avenue, Suite LA/B)

RAIN VENUE Above Location

PANEL DISCUSSION: Skype discussion with filmmaker Emma Christopher

FILMS They Are We (Emma Christopher, Australia/Cuba/Sierra Leone, 2013, 77min.)

theyAreWe_007 (1)

In Central Cuba, proud members of the Gangá-Longobá, a small Afro-Cuban ethnic group, have kept their unique heritage alive. Incredibly, through decades of brutal enslavement, independence wars, and then the denying of all religions after the revolution, they have retained a collection of distinct songs and dances that one of their ancestors brought from Africa as a slave. “They Are We” is the story of a remarkable reunion 170 or so years later, of the Gangá-Longobá group with their ancestors in Sierra Leone, West Africa.

Produced in collaboration with Staten Island Arts, African Story Network and the United States Sierra Leone Association.


PASSPORT THURSDAYS

Thursday, August 20, 7:00pm

LOCATION Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens

RAIN VENUE Queens Museum

LIVE PERFORMANCE Azanian People’s Movement

FILM Felix (Roberta Durrant, South Africa, 2013, 97min.)

FELIX.poster1

Described as “Billy Elliott with Cape jazz,” the film follows 14-year-old Felix as he dreams of becoming a saxophonist like his late father. When he leaves his township to take up a scholarship at an elitist private school, he defies his mother and turns to two aging members of his father’s old band to help him prepare for the school jazz concert.

Things are not easy at the new school for young Felix and he struggles to fit in with the other school boys and is bullied. He then finds a friend and bodyguard in Ricardo and a tutor in Samuel Pepys played by Joseph Hughes. Together the three form an unbreakable bond that exhibits what true friendship is.

Performer Bio: Bandleader Lesedi Ntsane was born and bred in Kwa-Thema, Gauteng in South Africa, and has been playing the trumpet since the age of 4. In 2011, he moved to New York City to further his studies at the prestigious New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music. For two years he worked at Jazz at Lincoln Center as part of the Webop Educational program and in 2014 performed at Carnegie Hall with David Kramer. His group now regularly plays at Madiba Harlem.

Produced in collaboration with the Queens Museum.


FAMILY DAY CELEBRATION

Sunday, September 13, 11:00am

LOCATION Governors Island: Colonel’s Row, Manhattan

RAIN DATE September 20

LIVE PERFORMANCE Dance, Drum, Double Dutch, Needle Arts, Storytelling, Food

FILM Shorts Film Program

The sights and sounds of Africa are just a seven-minute ferry ride away! Please join African Film Festival, Inc. and the Governors Island Preservation and Education Corporation for this exceptional all-day celebration on Governors Island. This event will feature FREE dance classes with world-renowned choreographers and master teachers from the USA, Brazil, Senegal, and Guinea. There will also be FREE storytelling, double-dutch and quilting demonstrations and workshops. Short African films by emerging and veteran directors will be shown throughout the day. African food vendors will be on site. A wonderful treat for the entire family!

Produced in collaboration with the Governors Island Preservation and Education Corporation