Ladybrille Magazine is a proud media sponsor of the Women in Film’s International Committee’s Out of Africa: A Night of Kenyan Film and Culture Event. The event co-produced by Universal Studios will be held Saturday March 5th, 2011 from 6pm-11pm at Universal Studios.
Women In Film (WIF) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping women achieve their highest potential within the global entertainment, communications and media industries and to preserving the legacy of women within those industries.
The WIFI Shorts Program is a celebration of filmmakers from all corners of the world, produced by the members of the Women In Film International Committee (WIFI). This year, for the 5th Annual Film Shorts Program, WIFI has partnered with Universal Studios to showcase and celebrate the dynamic works of emerging and established Kenyan and Kenyan-American filmmakers.
The evening will be hosted by Actors Edi Gathegi (X-men:First Class, Twilight, The Twilight Saga:New Moon, and Fox’s House) and Ida Onyango (Days of Our Lives and Tears of the Sun) at Universal Studios’ Stage 29 located at 100 Universal City Plaza in Universal City, Calif.
Many elite and talented Kenyan artists, musicians and filmmakers will be on hand, including world-renowned artist Wangechi Mutu. Ms. Mutu was named Artist of the Year by the Deutche Guggenheim in 2010 and has art featured in museums across the nation and abroad.
Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, a 2010 Literature Nobel Prize Nominee, will use this special occasion to present his latest book “Dream in a Time of War: A Childhood Memoir.”
Distinguished guests also include visual artists Jesse Allen, Githinji wa Mbire, Wawi Amasha and Racheal Wangui; with live musical performances by Kenyan recording artists Karis and Nasambu and Kenyan dancers.
Since 2007, the WIFI Shorts Program has celebrated filmmakers from around the world with a goal of exploring a new country every year and bringing its art, history and culture to communities in Los Angeles. Focusing on Kenya, this year’s event promises a live, rich cultural experience of art, food, music and dance that is rarely found outside of Africa.
The event’s main attraction is a screening of seven thought-provoking short films, some being shown for the first time in the United States, that are very dramatic and at the same time giving light and hope for the future. They all provide a real look at Kenyan life, adversity and triumph. The screening will be followed by a Q&A segment lead by actor Owiso Odera with a panel of filmmakers from the Kenyan community.
FILMS BY KENYAN FILMMAKERS
Through a diverse program of short films, this year’s series will celebrate and support the creative talents of Kenyan filmmakers. Every filmmaker has a unique perspective on their culture and their world. The films selected both narrative and documentary, will provide views into the psyche of these communities and deepen our understanding of Kenyan life, land, and cultures.
EXPERIENCE FILM, MUSIC, ART, CUISINE AND CULTURE
Come and experience the traditions and culture of Kenya! The short films shown at this special event are the apexes of an entire evening of artistic expression.
While tasting the culinary delights of Kenya, make certain you also enjoy the display of amazing art. Experience the rich traditions and history of Kenya as you stroll through the exhibition.
The reception will be catered by Titus Karanja and Kache Mwaro and there will be a hosted bar.
The books Wizard Of The Crow and Dreams In A Time Of War: A Childhood Memoir will be available for purchase and will be signed by the author, Ngg wa Thiong’o, on the day of event.
Sit back and enjoy the performances by Kenyan artists or, if you feel up to a challenge, join in.
To purchase tickets click here. Below are descriptions of the short films to be presented:
Africa Is a Woman’s Name, Wanjiru KINYANJUI, 2009
Kenyan Attorney, Njoki Ndung’u was a member of parliament between 2003 and 2007. Elected in 2006 by the United Nations she returned to her childhood school to teach girls in secondary school personal defense techniques as part of the “Big sister programme” against sexual abuse.
Kibera Kid, Nathan COLLETT, 2006
Kibera Kid is the story of Otieno, an orphan and aspiring musician caught in a life of petty crime in Kibera, East Africa’s largest slum. Otieno’s only family are the Razors, a gang of thieves. Otieno has to choose between a life of crime or redemption.
The Knife Grinder’s Tale, R.L. HOOKER, 2007
Producer, Chiara PAGLIERI
Based on the short story by award winning Kenyan Author, Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, this film tells the tragic story of a of a father’s journey to understand why his son was pointlessly murdered in the slums of Nairobi.
Picha Mtaani (Heal a Nation), Christine KINYANJUI and Toni KAMAU, 2010
A youth led photographic exhibition of photos taken during Kenya’s 2007 post election violence. This is the launch of a project that aims to heal a nation affected by tribalism and negative politics.
Pumzi, Wanuri KAHIU, 2009
Asha is a curator at a virtual natural history museum in the Maitu Community located in the Eastern African territory. Outside of the community, all nature is extinct. When she receives a box in the mail containing soil, she decides to plant a seed in it. The seed starts to germinate instantly. Despite repeated instructions from her superior to throw out the soil sample, she appeals to the Council to grant her an exit visa to leave the community and plant the seed. Her visa is denied and she is evacuated from the Museum. Asha decides to break out of the inside community to plant the seed in the ‘dead’ outside. She battles with her own fear and apprehension of the dead and derelict outside world to save the growing plant.
Subira, Ravneet “Sippy” CHADHA, 2007
Subira, is an 11-year-old Muslim girl, wants to live by her own rules in the conservative Muslim island of Lamu. Her mother wants her to be like the rest, and follow traditions. Coming of age, and with the expectation to wear the veil, does Subira succumb to pressure, or will she break free?
Taharuki (Suspense), Ekwa MSANGI-OMARI, 2010
A man and woman from opposing ethnic tribes, and both working for an underground liberation movement, find themselves forced to make tough decisions in order to stay alive. Time is running out, lives are at stake, and every second counts.