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Gypsy documentaries - Film When the Road Bends, Tales of a Gypsy Caravan - World Music Documentary Film
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09/16/2010

If Music Be the Food of Life - Szekszard [Hungary]

Ella: In Szekszard, people own vineyards. One is not from Szekszard if one does not have a vineyard.
The Bohyhad cultural center filled up quickly. After the film, we talked. I taped a bit. This film stars Roma who are musicians - the music is fantastic, but the point is their humanity. Some audience members are more comfortable sticking to the music. It is tiresome again and again to hear only about how musically gifted the Gypsies are. Of course they are comparatively gifted if this is encouraged, and that is a wonderful thing. But how about other options? They have a great gift for speaking, but noone encourages them to cultivate that and become lawyers and politicians and what not. No, let them cultivate their traditions that are palatable to the rest of us like wood carving and singing. Meanwhile, we shall be doctors and IT people, and presidents and politicians, that is our tradition. You Roma people keep on weaving baskets.

At the end of the screening and discussion, people did not go home, they lingered outside the building smoking and yacking away. A lady descended on me to sell her work with disadvantaged kids - so many people work for hatranyos hejzetu/disadvantaged children. Everybody is a social worker or activist - at least, those I meet. So I have to wonder why more progress is not made? Or maybe we all have to keep putting very small drops in this bucket before a change can be visible.

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