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Join the 2020 Harlem African Animation Festival

Image: Samba Le Grand

Harlem African Animation is the first festival in the United States to be entirely dedicated to Animated films and series from Africa. The festival gives voice and presence to a lesser known African cinematic practice of animation and yet a thriving creative force currently sweeping across the continent. Building on the work by long established animators such as Moustapha Alassane, William Kentridge, Jean Michel Kibushi, or Celia Sawadogo, a younger generation of animators are taking advantage of new technological innovations to bring African stories to the world of animation.

This first and edigital edition of the festival provides a balanced lineup of African animated films across generational lines as a way to give you a broader perspective on animation in Africa. The program activities include panel discussions and live streaming of films followed with Q/A sessions accessible to watch November 14-22

Saturday, November 14, 2020

2PM EST: PANEL - Moustapha Alassane, a pioneer of African animation
The panel examines Alassane’s pioneering work which has contributed to laying the foundation for today’s thriving animation on the continent. The discussion also brings into focus the creative process and techniques of Moustapha Alassane, current efforts at restoring and preserving his work, and the overall current state of animation in Africa. To register click here.

4PM EST: LIVE STREAMING (click here to join)

  • “Samba Le Grand” by Moustapha Alassane: The adventures of a legendary hero, Sambagana, who, dazzled by the beauty of a princess, asks her in marriage. She imposes several tests, and he wins them all, but only death will eventually bring the two together.
  • “Malika et la Sorcière” (Malika and the Witch) by Boureima Nabaloum: A long time ago, in a region of Burkina Faso, it was customary to organize a party once a year that brought together all girls and boys of marriageable age. Malika, a clever girl of about 12 years old, insists on accompanying her elders to this party. Against all odds, her presence will prove to be very beneficial for the older ones.
  • “Kokoa” by Moustapha Alassane: The festive citizens of the Kingdom of Frogs crowd into an arena to watch their warriors engage in hand-to-hand combat and to see Tountia and her musicians perform an enchanting concert.

Sunday, November 15, 2020

10:15PM EST: LIVE STREAMING (click here to join) - the two following short films are only available to watch in French

  • “Un coup de balai sur le pont” (Broom on Deck) by Boureima Nabaloum: The inhabitants of a poor neighbourhood unite to build a bridge which would allow them to access the benefits of the city centre. A leader imposes himself. As the construction moves on, a battle must begin. The people against dictatorship, for democracy.
  • “Le crapaud visite ses beaux-parents” (The Toad visists His in-Laws) by Jean Michel Kibushi: Rooted in the oral tale recounted by the Tetela in Sankuru, Democratic Republic of Congo, this story explains how it came to be that the Fox ate the Chicken, the Chicken ate the Termite, the Termite ate the Stick and the Stick ate the Toad, when the Toad arrives at his in-laws’ home and is served a meal with a single spoon, sparking off a terrible row!

10:50PM EST: PANEL - Les animateurs se racontent 
The discussion features Jean Michel Kibushi and Boureima Nabaloum, respectively from the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burkina Faso. These two animators will speak about their own works and their professional trajectories, which will provide insights into the larger field of African animation. To register click here.

6PM EST: LIVE STREAMING (click here to join)

  • “Soundiata Kéïta, Le réveil du lion" (Soundiata Keita, the Rise of the Lion) by Abel Kouame: Thirteenth century, kingdom of the Mande. Soundiata is a young prince of 25 years old who spends his days away from the royal court. He is handicapped in both legs since his childhood. But his father, King Naré Maghan Konaté has imposed him as his heir. The old king continues to believe in a prophecy according to which Sogolon Kkondé, the daughter of his former enemy, would give him a child, soundiata, who would make the Mande the greatest empire in the history of Africa.

THE FESTIVAL SELECTION WILL REMAIN FREE AND ACCESSIBLE TO WATCH AT YOUR CONVENIANCE BETWEEN NOVEMBER 16-22TH.

 

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