Let me start by saying that this is a documentary you MUST see. Your soul will thank you.
LANDFILL HARMONIC tells the story of an orchestra that originated at an impoverished area of Paraguay called Cautera. The orchestra is formed by teenagers who play instruments made out of materials fished out of the trash.
An amazing human, Favio Chavez, first arrived in Cateura to run an environmental study. During his time in the town he became invested in the people, particularly the youngsters, who count with minimal opportunities. He began to teach them music for free. His classes became popular, and the instruments scarce. With the help of yet another incredible person, a carpenter named Nicolas, instruments were built out of items found in a nearby landfill – be it oil cans, kitchen utensils, shoe parts, and so forth. The instruments worked, the children learned their music, and an online video turned them on to the world.
“Favio Chavez y los Reciclados” (Favio Chavez and the Recycled Orchestra of Cateura) first traveled to Brazil to perform at an environmental conference. That was the beginning of a series of events that has now taken them all over the world.
LANDFILL HARMONIC (get it? as in Land Philharmonic!) was directed by Brad Allgood and co-directed by Juliana Penaranda-Loftus. It has won over 30 awards (including Audience Award prizes at AFI FEST LA, SXSW FilmFestival, and Sheffield Film Festi special prize). It will be screened at Laemmle’s Pasadena Playhouse (673 E. Colorado Blvd, 91101) starting September 23, 2016. It will also screen at Laemmle’s Monica Film Center (1332 2nd St., Santa Monica 90401).
You can read more about this impressive group and film at landfillharmonicmovie.com. Save the date. You cannot miss this!
“La musica puede cambiar vidas.” (Music can change lives.)
“No tener nada no es excusa para no hacer nada.” (Having nothing is no excuse to do nothing.)
- Favio Chavez
Photo: Maria, Nohelia, and Tania – musicians with the Recycled Orchestra of Cateura / Photo courtesy of David Magdael & Associates, Inc.
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