Directed by Kim Johnson and Produced by Jean Michel Gibert of Maturity Productions and Barthélémy Fougea of WINDS, “Re-Percussions: Our African Odyssey” is a film about the cultural identity of African people and the diaspora told through the history a unique musical instrument.
Johnson’s film recently screened at the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival, one of the most important film events in the Caribbean, where it was awarded the award for Best Trinidad and Tobago Documentary Feature Film. The festival took place September 15-19.
is the story of the steelpan, which evolved from the drum, an instrument African slaves brought to the Americas, and from made from 55 gallon drums that formerly contained oil. Today the steelpan is a completely different orchestral instrument and steelpan orchestras have proliferated throughout the world as the only new musical instrument invented in the 20th Century.. It was
taken by Trinidadians to the Festival of Black Arts in 1977, held in Lagos, Nigeria, when it enthralled a young boy, Bowie Sonie Bowei. He never forgot and
25 years later Bowie has dedicated his life to propagating the steelpan in Nigeria. But it’s not so easy: first he had to learn the difficult craft of
making the instrument, and then penetrate the indifference of the society. The solution he opts for is to target the children, but can he succeed?