Film

'God Loves Uganda' NYC Premiere June 25th

African film 'God Loves Uganda' from filmmaker Roger Ross Williams premieres in NYC.


Last month OKA interviewed filmmaker Roger Ross Williams to discuss his first full-length feature, God Loves Uganda. Williams' uncompromising exposé of the relationship between American evangelicals and anti-gay campaigns in Uganda has been described as "the most terrifying film of the year." Tuesday June 25th God Loves Uganda makes its New York premiere as a part of BAMcinématek. To reserve your ticket, please email sean@mottopictures.com. Your name will be added to a special Okayafrica guest list, and available at the Rose Cinemas box office. Check out event details and watch the film's trailer below.

GOD LOVES UGANDA NYC PREMIERE

TUESDAY JUNE 25TH, 9:30pm

LOCATION: Peter Jay Sharp Building, BAM Rose Cinemas

RUN TIME: 83 minutes

RATED: NR

GENERAL ADMISSION: $14

BAM CINEMA CLUB MEMBERS: $9

Music
Photo by Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Hugh Masekela's New York City Legacy

A look back at the South African legend's time in New York City and his enduring presence in the Big Apple.

In Questlove's magnificent documentary, Summer of Soul, he captures a forgotten part of Black American music history. But in telling the tale of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, the longtime musician and first-time filmmaker also captures a part of lost South African music history too.

Among the line-up of blossoming all-stars who played the Harlem festival, from a 19-year-old Stevie Wonder to a transcendent Mavis Staples, was a young Hugh Masekela. 30 years old at the time, he was riding the wave of success that came from releasing Grazing in the Grass the year before. To watch Masekela in that moment on that stage is to see him at the height of his time in New York City — a firecracker musician who entertained his audiences as much as he educated them about the political situation in his home country of South Africa.

The legacy Masekela sowed in New York City during the 1960s remains in the walls of the venues where he played, and in the dust of those that are no longer standing. It's in the records he made in studios and jazz clubs, and on the Manhattan streets where he once posed with a giant stuffed zebra for an album cover. It's a legacy that still lives on in tangible form, too, in the Hugh Masekela Heritage Scholarship at the Manhattan School of Music.

The school is the place where Masekela received his education and met some of the people that would go on to be life-long bandmates and friends, from Larry Willis (who, as the story goes, Masekela convinced to give up opera for piano) to Morris Goldberg, Herbie Hancock and Stewart Levine, "his brother and musical compadre," as Mabusha Masekela, Bra Hugh's nephew says.

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