Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Afro-Latino/a Music Hightlights @ Tribeca Film Fest

The following Tribeca Film Festival
(April 23- May 4, 2008) listings are courtesy of Nedslist:

"they've been turning 'em away from screenings of this in new orleans. everybody i know who's seen it says it's great."

Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans

Tribeca Film Festival Program Listing

[FAUBO] | 2008 | 68 min | Feature Documentary
Directed by: Dawn Logsdon and Lolis Eric Elie

World Premiere

Cast & Credits
Director: Dawn Logsdon and Lolis Eric Elie
Principal Cast: Glen David Andrews, Lenwood Sloan, Eric Foner, Brenda Marie
Osbey, Irving Trevigne, John Hope Franklin
Executive Producers: Stanley Nelson, Wynton Marsalis
Producer: Lucie Faulknor, Dawn Logsdon, Lolis Eric Elie
Screenwriter: Lolis Eric Elie
Director of Photography: Diego Velasco, Keith L. Smith, Bobby Shepard
Editors: Dawn Logsdon, Sam Green, Aljernon Tunsil
Composer: Derrick Hodge

Program Notes

Faubourg Tremé is a first-person documentary by New Orleans natives Dawn Logsdon and Lolis Eric Elie. Drawing on several years of pre-Hurricane Katrina footage, the film brings alive the history of Black New Orleans through an in-depth look at one historic neighborhood, the Faubourg Tremé. Executive produced by Wynton Marsalis and Stanley Nelson, the film follows journalist and first-time filmmaker Lolis Eric Elie, who sets out to renovate his 19th-century house in this now deteriorating neighborhood. Drawn to the architecture and its mix of old and new, Elie soon finds that the history of this place is the real story. This once vibrant neighborhood, he learns, was in fact the center of African American economic independence and political activism from slavery through Reconstruction, Jim Crow, andthe civil rights struggles of the 1960s. In recent years, the Faubourg Tremé, now more often referred to as the Sixth Ward, has suffered from blight, drugs, and crime, and even more recently was devastated by the wrath of Hurricane Katrina-the effects of which we see here in heartbreaking detail. Yet Logsdon and Elie bring an insightful perspective to the retelling of this community's past, particularly through its literary and musical artifacts. The result is a fresh approach to historical documentary storytelling. The filmmakers interview prominent historians to elucidate the facts, but mostly what we hear and see is the music, dance, poetry, and voices of contemporary residents. We meet people several years before Hurricane Katrina and follow their stories through the storm's aftermath. We come to understand that, just as it has in the past, this deeply rooted community is determined to rebuild and to persevere.

--– Nancy Schafer

Screening Times & Locations: go here for links to maps to theaters.
Fri, Apr 25, 9:15PM
AMC Village VII Theater 6 (Map)

Sat, Apr 26, 8:30PM
Village East Cinema 6

Mon, Apr 28, 9:30PM
Village East Cinema 1

Thu, May 01, 3:15PM
Village East Cinema 1

Fri, May 02, 5:30PM
AMC 19th St. East Theater 1

I posted a video of pianist Bebo Valdéz playing with his longtime friend, the late bassist, Israel "Cachao" López performing "Lágrimas Negras," a little while back here.

Old Man Bebo

In Spanish with English subtitles.
Tribeca Film Festival Program Guide Listing

[OLDMA] | 2007 | 111 min | Feature Documentary

Directed by: Carlos Carcas
North American Premiere

Cast & Credits

Director: Carlos Carcas
Principal Cast: Bebo Valdés, Chucho Valdés, Leonardo Acosta, Omara
Portuondo, Israel López "Cachao", Fernando Trueba
Executive Producer: Angelica Huete, Fernando Trueba
Producer: Angelica Huete
Editor: Carlos Carcas
Production Coordinator: Nerea Aizpurua
Production & Research: Rosa Marquetti

Program Notes

Legendary Cuban musician Bebo Valdés' career didn't really take off until well after he turned 80. At 81 he won two Grammy awards and has since gone on to win four more and achieve international recognition. This extraordinary portrait of the man and the musician, recognized as a key figure in the development of mambo, recounts his remarkable life and career. Friends, relatives, and fellow musicians reminisce about the man who went on to become a living legend. He was born in Cuba in 1918 to a family that did not even own a piano, but he still managed to become an important influence upon Cuban music during its golden age in the '40s and '50s. Evocative footage and photos of Havana at that time take us back to when he was a
member of the orchestra at the legendary Tropicana nightclub, and he and his friends were changing the sound of Cuban music. Then the revolution came. Hotels and bars closed, and Bebo could not embrace the new regime. He fled his homeland and eventually found himself in Sweden, where he married, raised a family, and earned a living as a pianist in a cocktail lounge.
Thirty-four years later, his career would hit a high note. He is now 89 and playing strong.

"Bebo struts his stuff in several mesmerizing performance clips in this film. At the end, he plays a beautiful rendition of "Old Man River" as we watch a montage of images from his long and rich life. It is a moving testament to Bebo's talent and endurance. Producer Fernando Trueba observes that Bebo's life is "a triumph of art over all the accidents of life, and an act of poetic justice." This is indeed a story of triumph.

--Garrison Botts

* * *
Screening Times & Locations: go here for links to maps to theaters.
Fri, Apr 25, 9:30PM
AMC 19th St. East Theater 3

Sun, Apr 27, 12:30PM
AMC Village VII Theater 3

Tue, Apr 29, 4:00PM
AMC Village VII Theater 2

Thu, May 01, 1:30PM
Village East Cinema 7

Sat, May 03, 7:30PM
AMC Village VII Theater 2


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