Mildmay hosts Black History Month film night

Locals enjoyed a cultural treat last Thursday at a Black History Month film screening hosted by Mildmay Community Centre.

Islington mayor Theresa Debono opened the free viewing of Finding Fela, which attracted around 110 attendees.

Finding Fela movie trailer

Fela Kuti’s subversive music performances made him the first countercultural hero in sub-Saharan Africa. He used music to express his dissatisfaction with the dictatorial Nigerian government of the 1970s and 1980s. The star died of Aids in 1997.

Members of the public squeezed into the large community space and sat through the two-hour documentary looking at the Afrobeat star’s life and career.

Kwaku, a history and music industry consultant who interviewed Kuti, took questions after the screening. He said the cultural icon’s music wasn’t just about entertainment.

“Even though there was music, it was in the context of history, and more importantly music and politics.”

Water No Get Enemy – Fela Kuti

Aisha Forbes, director of race equality organisation Every Voice, which organised the night, said Black History Month provides a chance to push for better representation of black history all year round.

Black history is world history, it’s part of all of our history,” she said.

Some people don’t get the chance to see world-class film festival material like Finding Fela, Forbes added.

“We really love the idea of bringing film into the community.”

Every Voice is organising other events for Islington Black History Month