Month: April 2015

The Cape Cod Festival of Arab & Middle Eastern Cinema Goes Live!



In two days, this festival of mine will finally open, with an amazing event at the Chatham Orpheum Theater, that is already getting a lot of attention and ticket sales. This opening event includes a reception with Middle Eastern and North African cuisine, as well as Skype Q&As with the two filmmakers whose works we will see: Kadija Leclere’s The Bag of Flour (Morocco/Belgium; fiction feature)and Muzna Almusafer’s Cholo (Oman/Tanzania; fiction short).

Almost every event has a Skype Q&A with someone involved in one of the films in the program (either the short or the feature), but I’m really excited about a couple of events that have speakers coming from a distance to appear live, in-person for discussions. Nitin Sawhney, a colleague of mine at The New School and co-founder of the Boston Palestine Film Festival will lead discussions of his own film Flying Paper on Friday, May 1, 6:30 p.m. at First Parish Brewster, and of Jessica Habie’s extraordinary Mars at Sunrise on Saturday, May 2, 7:30 p.m. at Wellfleet Preservation Hall.

The other amazing event is our Closing Reception & Screening at Waters Edge Cinema in Provincetown on Sunday, May 3 at 12:15 p.m., where Shiva Balaghi, a curator at the Leila Heller Gallery in NYC and Brown University Visiting Fellow in Middle East Studies, will also be here live, in-person to talk about the film Fifi Howls From Happiness by Mitra Farahani (Iran, documentary) and its eccentric subject, gay Iranian sculptor Bahman Mohasses. There will also be food at this event and I promise it is worth the drive to Provincetown, which is just so lovely at this time of year.

There are a whole lot of other films, and you can even get a Brewster Pass to see all 4 programs at First Parish, by clicking here. Individual tickets are also available in advance and at the door.

Check out this amazing article in The Cape Codder. I’ll post the Provincetown Magazine feature shortly, as well.

Special thanks to our festival co-sponsors Cape Cinema, Cape Cod Museum of Art, and the Chatham Orpheum Theater. Also, this could not have been possible without generous support from the local cultural councils in Wellfleet, Brewster, Chatham, and Provincetown.