Cuba is an extraordinary place. Loved for its old cars, its cigars, its music and dance and the incredible liveliness of its people.
It was just past midnight when the news that Fidel had died came through. It was our first day of filming in Havana and we were in the middle of recording a Tony Avila concert. I captured on film that poignant moment when Tony was told the news and the music stopped. After that there was an enforced mourning period of nine days with a prohibition on music and alcohol. Many people were saddened with love and respect for the leader who had led their revolution, yet many others were indifferent and trapped in a political time warp that barely reflected their current aspirations. There was an air of heaviness on the streets and we were advised to keep a low profile and avoid any political discussion. There was no point travelling across the country when everything was suppressed so we stayed in Havana to do some great interviews with musicians in their own homes. When Fidel was finally buried we had seven days to make the most of Havana and have truly captured some magnificent footage that will allow Cuba My Soul to be an extraordinary and beautiful film.
There is no doubt that Fidel owns a deep part in the heart and soul of many Cubans. But for me, the heart and soul of Cubans is expressed by their zest for life and their splendid music, dance and arts.
We exceeded our expectations by capturing lots of inspiring footage and interviewing the crème de la crème of Havanas musicians. They were extremely generous in granting these interviews and really appreciated the opportunity that this film will provide to themselves and to the world’s appreciation of Cuban music. I invite you to help bring this work to fruition by supporting us on our crowdfunding site and sharing Cuba My Soul.
Published on Jan 3, 2009
Grammy Winner Pedrito Calvo’s Live presentation in Sala Atril of Cuban Theatre Karl Marx included in the Pedrito Calvo y la Nueva Justicia’s latest album “50 Años ” DVD. Directed by Eliam M. Marrero