“The Choir”, by Michael Davie
Screened on 10 December, 2009
Shot over six years, The Choir is about the music that unites Jabulani Shabangu and a group of fellow inmates who are battling to survive in South Africa’s biggest prison.
Jabulani is rebellious and angry until he meets a wily bank robber named Coleman, who recruits him for the prison choir. He rises in the ranks and leads the choir to victory at the National Prison Choir Competition. But there is more going on here. The brotherhood of choristers, along with Coleman’s fatherly wisdom transform Jabulani’s life and give him the tools he needs to face his victims and to survive behind bars, as well as in the world outside when he is released. Jabulani’s story is about the basic, powerful human desire to rise above our circumstances and change our lives for the better.
The film was followed by a Q&A with a panel of guest: Louis Joinet, Stéphane Hessel, Karel Kovanda, Heidi Hautala and moderated by Reed Brody.
Invitation, poster and Handout: