reports that St Johnian artist & filmmaker, Andrea Leland, is at it again. Leland, an award winning documentary filmmaker, is the director of Yurumein
(Homeland). She has just launched a crowdfunding campaign
for this upcoming, groundbreaking documentary. Yurumein
captures cultural revival among descendants of Caribbean natives and slaves, the Garifuna nation in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. See excerpts of the press release with related links below:
YURUMEIN (Homeland) a documentary about the revival of Garifuna culture on the island of St. Vincent. Through her fiscal sponsor, the Center for Independent Documentary, Leland is trying to raise $20,000 by August 16th to complete post-production on the film. Leland is requesting help to finish graphics and animation, sound design and color correction for the film. Any remaining funds will be used towards outreach and distribution efforts.
When Leland began to film YURUMEIN, Garifuna culture had been all but lost on the island of St. Vincent for the last two hundred years. The Garifuna people, descendents of the native Carib and Awarak people and West Africans, once lived freely on the island of St. Vincent. Forced into hiding and exile by British colonial forces during the 18th century, St. Vincent’s Garifuna descendants knew little of their ancestral language, rituals, dance, music or food. While traditions may have been lost on St. Vincent, Garifuna culture flourished in the exiled communities of Central America. In the film, Leland captures the efforts of St. Vincent’s Garifuna descended population to recover their cultural traditions by connecting with their brothers and sisters in the larger Garifuna disapora.
For a video:
(your-o-main) is an important UNTOLD STORY of Carib / Garifuna resistance against slavery that deserves its place in the annals of the African Diaspora. The film recounts the painful past of the Caribs on St Vincent and the extermination of scores of their ancestors at the hands of the British, while building an intimate portrait of Garifuna culture-in-transition today. We are given firsthand accounts from both Carib descendents who remain on the island of St Vincent and voices of returning descendents whose ancestors were exiled to Central America—where Garifuna traditional culture was able to survive and flourish.
When members of the Diaspora are first reunited and make a collective pilgrimage to the sacred site of Balliceaux (where the genocide occurred) the film reveals the beginnings of a movement among Garifuna people to revitalize traditional language, music, dance, and ritual. As Garifuna from around the world come together to remember and celebrate the lives and resilience of their shared ancestors, they also begin to discover possibility and hope for the future of Garifuna culture and a greater worldwide community….more info on the film can be found on the Center for Independent Documentary site. After reading about this amazing story, sign up to support her efforts. For as little as $5 you can help a St Johnian filmmaker realize her dream and help get an important story told.
Another related story of interest is the Miami Herald’s Caribbean Becoming Hotbed for Film Production