Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Landfill Harmonic - an orchestra created from rubbish

While working as an ecological technician at the Cateura Landfill, the largest garbage dump of Paraguay’s capital Asunción, Favio Chávez got to know and befriended some of the 2,500 impoverished families who lived at the garbage dump working as recyclers. Witnessing the rampant illiteracy, extreme poverty, pollution and surrounding culture of drugs and gangs, Chávez became acutely aware that the children needed something positive in their lives – something to keep them out of the landfill and striving for something more.

Having previously been a music teacher, Favio decided to share his love of music with the children, and began teaching music lessons using the handful of personal instruments he owned. He soon realised there wasn’t enough instruments for all the eager students, so he started experimenting with making instruments using scraps of dirty oilcans, jars, wood, forks and other junk in the Cateura landfill, the instruments began to take shape and become finely tuned musical instruments - violins, flutes, cellos, drums…all made from trash. From this ingenuity, the “Recycled Orchestra” was formed with the local children as its members learning and performing Bach, Mozart and Beethoven.

So far, Chavez has taught music skills to over 120 children, inspiring hope, confidence and an awakening of passions within the children and their families who are now beginning to believe in a future beyond the slums of the landfill. The youth orchestra, now 30 members strong, has performed throughout the world and is the subject of the upcoming documentary Landfill Harmonic - to be shown at Zurich Film Festival on Sunday (27th Sep) 

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Kiefer Sutherland and Mike Leigh in town for Zurich Film Festival

Zurich Film Festival kicks off on Thursday (24th September) with a visit from no less than Kiefer Sutherland and Mike Leigh who will be in town to collect special awards.

The film festival’s prestigious Golden Eye Award will be awarded to Kiefer on Friday (25th Sep) at the Corso Cinema, near Zurich Opera House (nearest train station is Stadelhoffen) at 9.25pm.

And this year’s Zurich Film Festival A Tribute to... award goes to British film director Mike Leigh (I'm a big fan) one of the most significant exponents of New British Cinema. Mike Leigh will collect the Golden Eye in person during the Award Night ceremony at the Zurich Opera House on 3rd October. A large number of Mike's films will be shown throughout the festival – my personal favourite being Secrets and Lies – pure genius.

Serving as the Festival’s most prestigious symbol of recognition, awarded in appreciation of the lifetime achievements of an actor or actress, the Golden Icon Award will be bestowed to Arnold Schwarzenegger on the evening of Wednesday, 30th September at 9pm at the Corso Cinema.

And there are several movies being screened for children, with the particularly heart warming Kids Film - Landfill Harmonic – screened on 27th September featuring a very special music teacher and a bunch of children from Paraguay using their rubbish to make instruments to form their own orchestra. Take a look at the dates, times, and trailer for the film here:

ZFF for Kids legal age is 6 years old with a recommendation of 8 years and over. Links to the ZFF for Kids can be found here.

Tickets are on sale now for ZurichFilm Festival which runs between 24th Sep and 4th October:

Saturday, 12 September 2015

It's Chibli time

It’s Knabenschiessen weekend! Knabenschiessen is one of Zurich’s oldest festivals  - officially held for the first time in 1889 – and is a traditional target shooting competition in Zürich held on the second weekend of September each year.

The competition is open to 13–17 year olds who either reside or are enrolled in a school in the canton of Zürich. Originally reserved for boys (Knaben), the competition has been open to female participants since 1991. The competition is held in the shooting range at Albisgütli to the south-west of the city centre on the slope of Üetliberg. It is surrounded by the Chilbli - a large fair.  (you can ride all of the rides for free from 11am to 11:30am on Knabenschiessen Monday)

Chilbli opening times

Saturday, September 12, at 10am - 1.30am
Sunday, September 13, 11am - 12.30am
Monday, September 14, 11am – 11pm

And this year, there is a giant slide to boot! The giant 200m long slide will travel through the city but there are a limited number of tickets available. The check-in tent opens at 11am and the slide opens from between 12pm until 8pm.

You need a ticket to access the slide. With your ticket you can slide as much as you want during a 2 hour slot. You have a choice between Action Tickets and Family Tickets (action time will be a bit more manic)

Children (6 – 16 years) CHF 18
Adults (from 16 years) CHF 20
Action ticket - from 16 years CHF 23

Children under the age of 6 are free if accompanied by an adult.

*Those under the age of 18 need to bring an exclusion of liability signed by their parent or guardian
•Bring your ID or passport
•Be at the check-in tent one hour before your time slot
•Do not wear jeans or any accessories that could be a security risk or damage the slide