The Afro Prairie Film Festival is set to celebrate its second edition this month.
The festival is a partnership between Black Space Winnipeg and Winnipeg Film Group, in celebration of Black History Month. Running February 21 through February 24 at Cinematheque, is dedicated to the support and exposure of emerging and established Black filmmakers across North America and promotes the work of established and emerging Black filmmakers from right here in Manitoba.
"The Afro Prairie Film Festival is the first Black film festival in the prairie region of Canada," says Black Space Winnipeg’s Alexa Potashnik. "Participants can look forward to a weekend filled with programming that explores Black narratives in filmmaking. Anyone interested in supporting Black filmmaking and learning about the industry while celebrating amazing films will appreciate this festival.”
The festival will show a variety of films through its run and features a keynote address on February 21 by Ella Cooper, founder of Black Women Film - Canada and an award winning independent filmmaker, interdisciplinary artist, photographer, impact producer, and facilitator based in Toronto. Karen Chapman, director of Lessons Injustice and Walk Good, will be in attendance at the February 23 screening of her short docs. The festival will also host networking luncheon for women in film on February 23, open to all local women filmmakers.
Hop hop artist Alpha Toshineza brings his powerful performance presence to the opening night reception, the frestival's French-themed night, at Platform Gallery on February 22. No stranger to the local music scene, Toshineza is visual artist and a Francophone MC based in Winnipeg. He started rapping in the '90s with various rap groups in Luxembourg. He quickly developed live perfomance and recorded three albums. In 2017, Toshineza released his third album, Jazz Inuit, which earned him a nomination for Francophone Artist of the Year at the Western Canadian Music Awards in addition to a SOCAN prize for Best Francophone Song for his single, “Dis-moi si tu maimes”. Toshineza has also collaborated with a number of artists including Kelly Bado, Crabskull, S-One, Justin Lacroix, Selci, Joanna Majoko, and Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Fresh from the release of a brand new single this month, Toshineza is currently working on a new album. He'll be joined at the reception by Spaz Like The DJ.