Reel Festivals is proud to present Reel Iraq, a festival of Iraqi Music, Cinema and Art to be held in Edinburgh in May, 2009.
The aim for this festival is to span the art forms, encompassing Iraqi Cinema, Music, Visual Arts, and Writing. The current date for the Festival is May 2009, with the films screening from 14th- 24th May. The festival will begin in Edinburgh, followed by a film season in Marseille and we are aiming for dates in other UK cities.
Aims of the Festival
- To spread awareness of Iraq behind the headlines.
- To empower Iraqi cultural figures and encourage their development.
- To encourage engagement of the local Iraqi and Middle Eastern community with the arts.
- To encourage dialog between the people of Scotland and people of Iraq and within these communities in Scotland.
Events During the Festival
Below is some information giving an outline of what you can expect during the festival. A lot more information will be published on the website over the coming weeks so we encourage you to sign up to our mailing list and we’ll keep you updated.
Filmhouse Edinburgh has again offered to provide us with accommodation for 10 screenings. These would be films either being made in Iraq or with Iraq as a focus. The films would be both documentary and fiction, and recent and archival. We plan to show the depth of Iraqi Cinema through as broad a mix of cinema as possible, from 1960’s epics to recent acclaimed documentaries such as ‘Iraq in Fragments’.
We plan to host 2 large scale concerts, with both traditional and experimental/modern musicians.
The Institute for Music in Human and Social Development (IMHSD) at the University of Edinburgh have agreed to assist with the Edinburgh side of this project and Edinburgh University Settlement have donated use of the Roxy Art House for performances and rehearsals.
“Stories of Iraqi Artists” aims to explore the experience of Iraqi artists both in and outside Iraq starting in the 1970s and ending with the situation at present. The stories of several artists will be told through examples of their work, video interviews and wall texts. It is planned to commission one of the few Iraqi artists still working in Iraq to make a piece exploring our efforts to try and tell “Stories of Iraqi Artists” in Edinburgh.
We are also working with the Arab Image Foundation to host a photography exhibition of Latif el Ani’s black and white photography from Iraq during the 1940’s to 1960’s.
We are working in tandem with the Scottish Poetry Library on developing links with a variety of Iraqi poets and authors and plan to produce a set of new translations of Iraqi poetry as well as a series of readings from these cultural figures.
Lectures and Workshops
For all of the above we will incorporate a series of talks, master-classes and workshops which will be held in the University of Edinburgh Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies Department, the Institute of Music in Human and Social Development, and the Scottish Documentary Institute (where film masterclasses will be held with visiting directors).