February 27, 2018 - 6:30 pm
Mika Kaurismaki’s documentary MAMA AFRICA introduces a new generation of music fans to the legacy of world-famous South African singer and activist Miriam Makeba.
Makeba was the first South African musician to become an international star; she was a gifted singer and a charismatic performer whose nightclub and concert engagements made her a global sensation in the 1950s. However, her determination to speak out against South Africa’s apartheid regime forced her to leave her homeland, and she relocated to New York City in 1959.
Makeba found fame and purpose as a performer and activist, but her 1968 marriage to Black Panther Party leader Stokely Carmichael slowed her career in America to a standstill. Settling in Guinea, Makeba continued to speak out for South African freedom, returning home to mentor a new generation of artists and activists after the fall of apartheid and the election of Nelson Mandela.
Through rare archive footage of her performances and through interviews with supporters (including Harry Belafonte, Hugh Masekela, Paul Simon, Angélique Kidjo and many others), MAMA AFRICA reveals the remarkable journey of an incredible talent.