Discussion: Belarusian Courage

Guest: Aliaksei Paluyan, film director

Host: Heleen Gerritsen, director of goEast Film Festival

Basic human rights, including freedom of opinion and expression are severely attacked in Belarus. Thousands of people who are longing to live their lives in democracy and who are calling for change in Belarus are arrested and put in jail every day. How challenging is it for filmmakers and film curators to do their creative jobs in Belarus? You will have a chance to learn from a film director Aliaksei Paluyan whose latest documentary film Courage was premiered at Berlinale and is part of the International Competition at the One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival. How challenging is it to make a documentary film about an underground theatre group in the middle of mass protests that followed presidential elections in Belarus? What special skills do you need to be able to tell an inspiring story under such circumstances? Where do you get courage to continue with your work?

The discussion is part of the IDF Industry Sessions series, organized by the Institute of Documentary Film in Prague. In cooperation with One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival.

Live-stream on FB, in English

Guest

Aliaksei Paluyan, film director

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A solitary woman dressed in white is holding the traditional Belarusian flag – a single red stripe between two white ones. Both the flag and the woman’s hair are fluttering in the wind. There are military units – armed men dressed in black – standing in the background.

Courage

For 14 years, the Belarusian Free Theatre has bravely criticised Lukashenko's authoritarian regime in its performances. But at a time when the country is at a crossroads, the functioning of the theatre is more endangered than ever before.

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