Shara K. Lange, Lee Bidgood
color, 56 min, 2015
in English and Czech
with English subtitles
Available on DSL and DVD
Banjo Romantika shares the story of Czech musicians who play a unique version of American Bluegrass, melding their political past and present into a lively musical tradition. Czechs first heard bluegrass during World War II, when the Armed Forces Network broadcast American music for soldiers. For many dissatisfied Czechs living in a communist state, bluegrass was an outlet of creative expression, and more so, a look towards freedom.
In this film, ethnomusicologist Lee Bidgood explores the genre’s fascinating history with musicians in the Czech Republic, and performs original Czech Bluegrass songs at the renowned venue, The Down Home, in Johnson City, Tennessee.
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