Film about Congo’s Kinshasa Symphony opens African Film Fest

Posted on: April 6, 2011

Wednesday (4/6) on the WNYC website, Femi Oke writes, “Mahen Bonetti, founder of the New York African Film Festival (N.Y.A.F.F.) has an annual dilemma. From a program of over thirty films, she has to pick one to open each year’s festival. … When I visited the N.Y.A.F.F. office, Bonetti told me her secret to programming opening night, which this year falls on Wednesday April 6. She aims to appeal to both fans of African cinema and to people who may be seeing their very first African film. This year, she’s chosen the documentary ‘Kinshasa Symphony,’ a film about the Democratic Republic of Congo’s only symphony orchestra and its musicians. If you’re shocked that there’s a 200-member strong orchestra performing Handel, Mozart and Beethoven in a region better known for conflict, corruption and chaos, that’s the point! ‘Kinshasa Symphony’ challenges many of the usual images and stories that come out of Congo. Bonetti describes the documentary simply as ‘triumphant.’ … The Kinshasa Symphony orchestra’s founder and conductor Armand Diangienda will be onstage at the festival on Wednesday night to answer audience members’ questions.”

Posted April 6, 2011