in my quest to become the queen of brooklyn, i’ve conquered the party girl life, but now my philanthropic side is kicking in. this will be my second year as a member of the brooklyn academy of music and i’m beyond excited about the film series beginning today, “black audio film collective”.
the black audio film collective began as a group of black british undergrads in 1982. they went on to produce award winning slide-tape texts, films and videos, four of which will be shown this week at BAM. the collective disbanded in 1998, but they left the world with an abundance of work that will serve as a sacred relic of black diasporic excellence. check out the video below of an interview with bafc founder, john akomfrah and the series schedule.
feb 24. the stuart hall project, 7 and 9:30pm
Influential cultural theorist and founder of the New Left Review, Stuart Hall broke new ground with his penetrating, persuasively argued work which posited that cultural identity is not, as is often presumed, fixed, but fluid. John Akomfrah’s engrossing documentary combines new and archival footage of Hall with a Miles Davis soundtrack to forge an elegiac, moving portrait of one of the preeminent thinkers of our time.
feb 25. seven songs for malcolm x, 7:30 and 9pm
The life and legacy of the electrifying civil rights leader are portrayed in this mesmerizing film, which intertwines documentary footage, tableaux-like reenactments, and interviews with his widow Betty Shabazz, Spike Lee, and others. Akomfrah’s multilayered essay film is a hypnotic and emotionally rich consideration of its iconic subject’s struggles, ideological breakthroughs, and enduring place in cultural mythology.
feb 26. handsworth songs, 7:30 and 9pm
One of the BAFC’s defining works, this fascinating free-form documentary mosaic uses the 1985 Handsworth riots—a violent outburst in Birmingham, England, ignited by widespread unemployment and racial tensions—as a jumping-off point to explore race relations in Britain. The film radically juxtaposes sound and image—impressionistically mixing archival video, photographs, interviews, and footage of the riots—to arrive at a powerful, allusive, and deeply personal statement about the black British experience.
feb 27. who needs a heart, 7 and 9pm
The tumultuous life of the controversial 1960s black revolutionary (and convicted murderer) Michael X is illustrated by a kaleidoscopic melding of sound and images. The radically discordant free jazz soundtrack provides a surreal counterpoint to the mix of newsreel and staged footage in this exhilarating experiment in documentary storytelling.
hope too see some of you this week. i’ll be the one sobbing loudly every time malcolm x’s face flashes across the screen. for more info about this series and how to become a member of BAM, visit www.bam.org. it will be more than worthwhile.