9/18/17: UPDATE: I am re-editing the 3 Rivers to Cuba documentary in early 2018, so stay tuned for updates on the new version.
Good news! The wait is almost over.
The 40 minute documentary short “3 Rivers to Cuba,” featuring Kenya C. Dworkin, Teanna Medina, Noël Quintana, Boris Balsindes Urquiola, Juan Antonio Madrazo, and Manuel Cuesta Morúa will be available to watch for FREE on both youtube and vimeo starting November 25, 2016.
This project highlights the ties between Pittsburgh, PA and Cuba, through interviews with local community superstars who share and celebrate Cuban music, dance, culture and religion, as well as Cuban artists and advocates. A specific focus is on the contributions of Africans to Cuban culture and community, and tracing the African heritage in Latin music and dance. Additionally, work that has been done locally in Pittsburgh to support the Afrodescendiente (people of African descent) movement in Cuba will be explored.
In June 2016, the Spinning Goat crew (Chris Mason and Brenda Sólkez) traveled to Cuba, documenting music, dance and culture in Santiago de Cuba and Havana. They interviewed Manuel Cuesta Morúa, a historian, and Juan Antonio Madrazo, an advocate in the Afrodescendiente movement. In Pittsburgh, interviews with Teanna Medina, an Orisha dancer, founder of Yemaya Pittsburgh and a community organizer; Kenya C. Dworkin, a Cuban teacher, translator and activist, and Noel Quintana, a conga drummer and Cuban music aficionado round out the piece and show the rich connections that people in Pittsburgh, PA have with Cuba and its people and culture. In August 2016, Cuban artist and producer Boris Balsindes Urquiola was in Pittsburgh for an artist residency, and will add his perspective of growing up in a poor neighborhood in Havana, and the importance of art, identity and expression.
“3 Rivers to Cuba” is an independently produced documentary by Spinning Goat Productions, with support from Advancing the Black Arts Pittsburgh grant through The Heinz Endowments and The Pittsburgh Foundation.