The festival's program, announced at a press conference in Sintra, will bring together several of the main names in today's flamenco, such as Josémi Carmona Trio with Pepe Habichuela, the dancer Farruquito, in addition to the performances of Hungarian Mónika Lakatos, the first gypsy artist to receive the Womex award, there will also be Portuguese Ricardo Ribeiro, Romanian Taraf de Caliu (new formation of the founders of Taraf de Haïdouks) and, at the end of the festival, the No Smoking Band by the Serbian director Emir Kusturica, who is part of the jury of this edition.
“At a particular moment that we are going through, discussing the presence of the Roma in Portugal, we thought it was extremely important to make an analysis of what Roma culture really is, celebration and everything that has given us”, said the producer and director of LEFFEST, Paulo Branco, during the press conference.
Romengo & Mónika Lakatos at WOMEX 15
In this context, the festival will also present an exhibition announced as the first in Portugal, at MU.SA, in Sintra, by the Austrian Rom artist Ceija Stojka (1933-2013), who survived three Nazi concentration camps and who became a painter and writer who exhibited in multiple countries throughout her career.
Additionally, the festival will also organize debates on both the past of the Roma community and the current situation, in a celebration that aims to serve as a “response and reaction to all the xenophobic and anti-Rom discourses that are taking place across Europe”, as said programmer Inês Branco Lopéz.
The LEFFEST, which will be distributed again in several spaces in Lisbon and Sintra, will have eight films in competition and more than a dozen out of it, with emphasis on the latter, among which are the most recent works by Wes Anderson (" The French Dispatch”, applauded at this year's Cannes Film Festival), by Joaquim Pinto and Nuno Leonel (the trilogy “Pathos Ethos Logos”), by Paul Schrader (“The Card Counter”) or by Joachim Trier (“The Worst Person in” the World”).
The festival's competition includes “A Chiara” by Jonas Carpignano, “A Night of Knowing Nothing” by Payal Kapadia, “Brother's Keeper” by Ferit Karahan, “Onoda – 10.000 Nuits Dans La Jungle”, by Arthur Harari, “ Ouistreham” by Emmanuel Carrère, “Red Rocket” by Sean Baker, “The Innocents” by Eskil Vogt, and “Unclenching The Fists” by Kira Kovalenko. In addition to Kusturica, the jury for this edition is made up of the Nobel Prize for Literature J. M. Coetzee, the director and producer Maria Speth and the actress Dolores Chaplin.
The LEFFEST will also perform retrospectives by Jane Campion, Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Mike Dibb, Cristi Puiu and Maria Speth, with a focus on the work of Portuguese director and producer Rodrigo Areias and the screening of filmed pieces and a 'masterclass' by the Italian director Romeo Castellucci. For the first time, the festival will have an extension in Matosinhos, at Norteshopping, from 21 to 25 November, in partnership with Cinemas NOS.