Still from The Dream of Shahrazad
Directed by Francois Verster, the documentary The Dream of Shahrazad will be screened at Cape Town's The Labia Theatre starting 8 April.
The Dream of Shahrazad addresses a post revolution life and the heartbreak experienced due to developments in Egypt, Turkey and Lebanon’s social and political spheres.
The film premiered in November 2014 at the 27th International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, which features the best works of documentary filmmakers.
It then won several awards including the Al-Husseini Abou-Deif Prize for Best Freedom Film at Egypt’s Luxor African Film Festival. The film also won two awards at the South African Filmand Television (SAFTA) : the Best Documentary Film and the Best Directing in a Documentary.
The Dream of Shahrazad employs music, politics and storytelling, presenting stories in the style of the literary classic Arabian Nights, using its main character Shahrazad as a metaphor.
The film’s multiple characters include a youth orchestra conductor, a Cairene storytelling troupe, a troubled Lebanese actress, as well as various others, all employing art for a new political use, in addition to exploring how creativity can be used to fight oppression.
Francois Verster is an award-winning South African documentary director whose films have won awards, most notably an Emmy for Outstanding Cultural and Artistic Achievement in 2006 for A Lion’s Trail.
Pavement Aristocrats (1998), When the War is Over (2002), The Mother’s House (2006) and Sea Point Days (2009) are Verster’s other films, which mostly tackle social injustices, while taking a personal approach to delivering people’s stories and experiences.
His Cape Town based production company Undercurrent Film & Television has been producing documentary programmes for local and international markets since 1998.
For more arts and culture news and updates, follow Ahram Online Arts and Culture on Twitter at @AhramOnlineArts and on Facebook at Ahram Online: Arts & Culture