Stories centered around Black arts – from dance to music, drawing and painting – now streaming on WORLD.
Celebrating a notable 15th season, AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange returns with five films, spotlighting the power of Black art and how it reflects realities, restores spirits, celebrates triumphs, issues calls to action and unites people across around the world. The award-winning series, which has featured films from the likes of Michèle Stephenson to Thomas Allen Harris, continues its mission to focus on independent documentaries and short films about contemporary life, art and culture from the African diaspora.
The 15th season of AfroPoP: The Ultimate Cultural Exchange is now streaming on WORLD, YouTube and the PBS app.
Can You Bring It: Bill T. Jones and D-Man in the Waters
by Rosalynde LeBlanc and Tom Hurwitz
This special presentation documentary traces the history and legacy of choreographer-dancer-director Bill T. Jones’ tour de force ballet, “D-Man in the Waters.” Rosalynde LeBlanc guides her students to reconstruct the ballet while simultaneously teaching them of the AIDS epidemic’s oft-forgotten history. The experience deepens the dancers’ understanding of the power art can have in a time of crisis.
by Claire Duguet
A guided tour into the career, life and indomitable spirit of five-time Grammy Award-winning international music icon Angélique Kidjo. The film features footage of the activist appearing with 20th century musical superstars Miriam Makeba, Celia Cruz, Youssou N’dour, Ziggy Marley, Philip Glass, and Peter Gabriel; and cameo appearances by contemporary music stars including Alicia Keys and Yemi Alade.
Bill Traylor: Chasing Ghosts
by Jeffrey Wolf
Bill Traylor was a unique American artist with an unlikely biography. Born into slavery in 1853, Traylor spent most of his life working the land. He began drawing and painting in his later years, making more than 1,000 works of art between 1939 to 1942. The film gives voice to a man who endured extreme hardships during an era of legalized racial indignities, to become one of America’s most prominent artists.
The Sound of Masks
by Sara CF de Gouveia
Mapiko is a traditional masked dance performed exclusively by male members of the Makonde community of Northern Mozambique. The film follows Atanásio Nyusi, a storyteller and a legendary Mapiko dancer, taking us on a visually dramatic journey through the country's past - including Mapiko’s role as a tool to challenge colonization during the Mozambican War of Independence - and its vibrant present.
Rewind & Play
by Alain Gomis
Improvisational pianist and composer Thelonious Monk is considered one of the brightest luminaries of 20th century jazz. Featuring footage preserved from a 1969 interview with French state television, the recordings reveal Monk in the grip of the violent factory of stereotypes from which he tries to escape. The film offers an unfiltered glimpse at the indignities some artistic geniuses are asked to endure.