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Still from Rafiki (2018).

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ICA Cinema Series: Rafiki

ICA Cinema Series

Wednesday, Dec 12

6:00 PM–8:00 PM


The December edition of the ICA Cinema Series will feature the Virginia premier of the groundbreaking Kenyan film, Rafiki.  The event is curated by Heather Waters, founder & producer of the Richmond International Film & Music Festival (RIFF).

Directed by Wanuri Kahiu, Rafiki is a love story starring Samantha Mugatsia and Sheila Munyiva. It has enjoyed wide acclaim and controversy in 2018, including becoming Kenya’s first ever official foreign film Oscar submission. The film premiered at Cannes and went on to play at the Toronto Film Festival, Sydney Film Festival, and many others on the circuit before being banned for a period of time due its content.

Samantha Mugatsia makes her acting debut in Rafiki in the lead role of Kena. Mugatsia will be traveling from Nairobi and to attend the Richmond premiere, with a Q&A to follow the screening moderated by Waters and Enjoli Moon, Assistant Film Curator at the ICA.

Pre-mixer with Live Music by Mighty Joshua

A mixer will take place prior to the screening and include an acoustic music performance by local Reggae favorite, Mighty Joshua. Mugatsia, also a musician who drums for the Nairobi band, Yellow Light Machine, will accompany Mighty Joshua in the performance. The two met on Mighty Joshua’s 2016 Kenya music tour when they played together and also supported efforts for the Makindu Children’s Program, a non-profit that provides for the nutritional and medical needs of hundreds of destitute AIDS orphans and other vulnerable children, as well as access to primary education through high school, psychosocial support, advocacy, and vocational training. Mighty Joshua describes Mugatsia as family and “the rhythm keeper, the fire sitter…a real Braveheart.”  The two also will perform at the IX Art Park in Charlottesville on December 14.

The mixer begins at 6:00 pm and will include the live music performance and cash bar. Rafiki begins at 6:30 pm and will be followed by a Q&A.

Run Time: 1 hr 23 mins