The Faculty of Music Education in Zamalek is organising a four-day film festival, called Music -Together We Uplift, where four international films will be screened. The four films will be shown on consecutive days, starting 23 June until 26 June. The objective of the event is to show the developmental role of music in society and how it can positively affect change. The films also show the uplifting role music plays and how it can inspire to act positively in their own community.
On 23 June, the festival will screen the German documentary El Sistema, which tells the story of how José Antonio Abreu founded the musical network El Sistema. This network aims to help develop poor Venezuelan children into talented and internationally successful musicians. The state foundation was established in 1975, and has been responsible for helping to develop talents like Venezuelan conductor and violinist Gustavo Dudamel. The documentary shows how Abreu’s foundation has changed the life of children living in destitute circumstances and has provided them with inspiration and goals.
The second movie scheduled is the British documentary Soweto Strings, which follows musician Rosemary Nalden who founded the Buskaid Music School. The school is located is in the town of Soweto in Johannesburg and teaches underprivileged children how to play classical music. The film shows how the school transforms the lives of the children and the essential role classical music plays in bettering their lives.
The German documentary Rhythm is It will be shown on 25 June, which is about Sir Simon Rattle’s educational program at the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. The program chose 250 children from public schools and developed their dancing abilities to perform the ballet The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky. The program’s aim was to make classical music more popular among youth. The film won Best Documentary at the Bavarian Film Awards in 2005.
The final screening planned is the German documentary Kinshasa Symphony. The film tells the story of how the chaotic circumstances in the city of Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo led to the development of the Kinshasa Symphonic Orchestra. It also shows the close connections that grew between the members of the orchestra and the dedication of the mostly self-taught musicians. The orchestra was founded by Armand Diangienda, the son of Simon Kimbangu, a well-known religious leader in Congo, who was convicted of sedition and died in prison.
After each screening there will be a discussion of the film. The films will start at 11am till 2pm at the faculty’s headquarters in Zamalek.