2017 DOK.fest München im Internationalen Wettbewerb Filmkunstfest Mecklenburg - Vorpommern im Deutschen Wettbewerb 57. Film Festival Krakau
They sing about homesickness, love, war and forgiveness. The voices pertain to drug dealers, thefts or murderers jailed in one of the about thousand Russian prisons or penal camps. They all dream about becoming part of the song contest “Kalina Krasnaya“ (English: Red Elderberry). Each of the approximately 700,000 Russian prisoners has the opportunity to participate.
For Natalia Abashkina, director of the show and soul of the programme, working with the prisoners is a vocation. Tirelessly she travels through the country looking for talents and caring about her fosterlings. Stefan Eberlein accompanied her. His film provides insights into a paralell world. The life stories of the protagonists not only reveal personal fates but also reflect the social reality of a state still characterized by arbitrariness and brutality. A Tale of Singers and Murderers also demonstrates that even in the harsh reality of nowadays Russia it is possible to act deeply human and solidarily- and reveals the unique power music can unfold.
90 or 52 mins version with English or German subtitles available