Films from Africa on the Street:
- Why African Dance? (CineFavela, 2006, Portuguese)
- Coco: From slavery to the stage (CineFavela, 2006, Portuguese)
- Afoxé: Fury, ritual, fiesta (CineFavela, 2006, Portuguese)
- Makulelê: warriors that dance in the dark (CineFavela, 2006, Portuguese)
- Torê: a ritual of the Fulni-ô indians. (CineFavela, 2006, Portuguese)
Africa on the Streets
Dozens of programs for street children use dance as a way to build self esteem, discipline, and coordination, and many of them have expressed interest in learning more about the rich traditions of African dance in Brazil: dances like the maracatu, maculelé, zandó, and xaxadó. These dances have been an immensely powerful tool for cultural development in the poor favelas of Recife, Brazil, and we think they will also be important in other countries where street children feel Africa in their blood.
We had planned to do this project in 2005 with the Brazilian NGO Semente do Amanhã, but an internal crisis in this small, poor organization forced us to rethink our plans. Instead, we formed a video-research group with the kids from Pé no Chão , and with those kids, we traveled around Recife to talk with the best musicians, dancers, and composers of African music. The result is teaching videos about the dances that are so important in Brazil, giving step by step instructions to children (and their teachers) in other countries. We also include interviews and lessons about the cultural importance of African dance in Brazil, and send the resulting DVD to organizations all around Latin America.