Back to Africa

Back to Africa

Back to Africa

  On their way through the European continent excited André Heller’s show Africa! Africa! Review an audience of millions, and understands it quite casually, our image of the black continent, which is mainly affected by disaster news gently. The show African artists with confidence and an almost unbelievable feeling for your body to accomplish the artistic performances and provide an insight into their culture and folklore. Othmar Schmiderer noted the success of the Circus project, which was initiated by André Heller, an opportunity to some of the performers appearing therein on a short break in their African homeland accompany them. The result is a remarkable cheaper documentary that captures the lives of artists on successful manner, but many others can be swept under the rug, or at best cuts it. A very conscious choice, as Schmiderer stressed: “It was not my intention to make Back To Africa with an explicitly political film. A lot more I became interested in the extraordinary energy of these people, their life history, their art – and not least the question of how show these aspects both within and outside the normal sphere of culture. I am talking in this film to move closer to an unfamiliar culture, a culture of which we Europeans could learn much if we allow it, “it is in a Read Director’s Statement at the Press Bulletin of the film.

Five artists are the ones who accompanied the Schmiderer with the camera in their home and they can thus take the opposite approach, as many refugees from Africa: Mingu Diagne Sonko example, is a dancer from Dakar, the capital of Senegal, which left for the show her husband and son in their home. Whenever it comes, she visited the two and wants to return home once she has created for her family a solid financial foundation . Ebraima Tata Dindin “Jobareth from Gambia plays the kora, the traditional harp and the bridge has also contributed the music back to Africa. Like many of his colleagues Africa! Africa! also engaged himself in his home for the disadvantaged, and contains samples of his art in the service of education campaigns and events to health care. Momboye Georges is a choreographer and dancer and is from the Ivory Coast. The son of a tribal chief, he was familiar from childhood with the various dances and rituals of his clan, and understood it by means of dance to overcome his physical disability. Unlike many other artists, the show was anchored Momboye but early on in Europe, since 1992 he has lived and taught as a dancer and professor of Dance in Paris. The “Snake Man” Makaya Dimbelolo alias ” Huit Huit “from Angola, was born in Angola, the son of a Senegalese and an Angolan, and grew up in Congo. Even before his involvement in André Heller’s show went on Huit Huit at various galas and festivals in Europe and Africa, and lives with his family in Europe . Dickson Oppong, the “Waterman” is from Ghana and also has long been mainly in Europe on the move. His visit to Kumasi is the first in two years. But soon the Waterman will not be alone on his tours, his daughter Stefanie was also for Africa! Africa! committed .

Schmiderers trip with his protagonist opens a new perspective on the continent. Instead of resignation, we see hope and optimism, where to get there and determine Dance and Music images and one gets the impression that the slogan of “helping people help themselves” here long ago became a reality – is very playful and easy manner, and full of joie de vivre. (self-seeking) is critical in this film in vain. And this is explained also from the background of formation: After all, Andre Heller and Othmar Schmiderer realized the documentary Blind Spot – Hitler’s Secretary (2002) together, allowing greater access Schmiderers to illustrate his material. So much proximity to the object of interest is precisely in a double-edged documentary sword. Despite the positive message of the show and the film Africa’s problems are serious, and the artists just do not exemplary, but very privileged. But come the specific concerns and needs of artists, given the fascination with the artistry and a rousing African music little behind – the rare contacts with the families, the respiratory and homeless of the circus life, they seem only briefly and in passing to and from the film are not pursued.

This is a shortcoming of the one part of a beautifully photographed and highly interesting film. But it also reflects the spirit of those five artists again: With talent, endless hard work and great determination they managed to build something and create a perspective. The numerous projects that have emerged from this show that the Waterman, Tata Dindin and all the others are indeed isolated cases, but they give a whole continent a new face and hope. It was high time to do so.

(Joachim Kurz)

Title: Back to Africa Country of production: Germany, Austria Year of production: 2008 Length: 97 (Min) Rental: Piffl media ISBN: 047179312080

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