Aaaaand, That’s a Wrap
A student told me at the premiere that it must be a nice feeling to have finally made it to the end of two months of hard work. “Two months??” I said, “more like nine months of working non-stop to get to this point.” She looked at me and smiled. “Nine months,” she repeated, “oh well then I guess this is just the birth.” I couldn’t have found a more apt analogy if I would have tried.
The pilot-project phase of the Burundi Film Center is now officially complete and first of a few flights back to Canada leaves in just a few hours. It only seems appropriate that I’m still rushing against the clock to write this final entry, despite an incredibly relaxing one week holiday on the heavenly beaches of Zanzibar. My 24 hour return to Burundi before my flight home has been a frantic relay of finalizing everything necessary and wrestling through more seemingly insurmountable technical difficulties. Luckily, as has been the trend, friends and colleagues have stepped up and rose to the challenge, making sure I return home with copies of the films that contain both French and English subtitles. At the end of the day, those films will be the only concrete evidence of what we’ve accomplished and will hopefully be the gateway to some funding in the future.
Mark your calendars, because the BFC films will premiere in Canada at a screening/fundraiser officially slated for Sunday, September 16 in Ottawa! I will provide more details as soon as they are available in the hopes everyone who has been following this blog, and even those who haven’t, can come and enjoy a truly unique evening of entertainment. I hope to bring in Burundian drummers, screen some behind the scenes mini-documentaries and showcase more ‘Farrout’ pictures, so it should be a great presentation of everything we’ve done so far.
I want to take this final space to thank everyone who has helped this project become what it is and sent their support throughout our time here. Reading everyone’s reactions to the project really gave us the encouragement to carry on and was appreciated in ways I can’t properly articulate. The kindness, generosity and hard work of those on the ground in Burundi – the students and volunteers – also needs to be acknowledged because we would be nowhere without you. Thank you Papy for your equipment, expertise and unparalleled support whenever we needed you. Apollinaire you were always there for us and brought a warmth of character that is always both calming and re-assuring. Sabrina, you believed in the project and came on board while everything was still in pieces, you are far beyond your years and will always have a place with the BFC. Bridget, thank you for the beauty of your pictures and presence, never failing to keep myself and those around you optimistic – I hope you as well will grow with the future of the BFC. And Raymond – get back to work. I already hear our newborn crying out to be fed, so I guess we better find a way to provide. What have we gotten ourselves into…