> AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 FESTIVALS is a feature-length documentary film that explores how rhythmic music, dance and rituals bring us together as human beings - deepening the connection to ourselves, each other and nature.
Playing on the title of Jules Verne’s novel >Around the World in Eighty Days<, we research and visit festivals around the world - however big or small,known or hidden, traditional or contemporary. We travel to, participate in and document festivals across the globe to create a holistic and inclusive portrait of our time’s ritual practices. Through this, we venture out on a journey that moves beyond cultural, political and economic divisions, and straight into the spirit of people, extracting the very essence of what it means to be human.
As we venture out into the world of festivals we investigate into organizational structures, as well as the ritualistic elements within the practices - and enquire into similarities and differences between various festivals. How, for example, is a gathering like Burning Man in the desert of Nevada related to a shamanic ceremony in the Amazonian rainforest? And how do the organizers, artists, musicians, curators, and facilitators of each festival guide the participants on their journey ?
By incorporating the knowledge of experts from a range of fields relating to the subject matter and tackling questions from diverse angles - including anthropologists, music- and neuroscientists, musicians, artists, activists, cultural managers, politicians and shamans - we aspire to offer a comprehensive understanding of how we can design and cultivate our collective cultures. May this mosaic of cultural portraits and perspectives sculpt a more balanced, peaceful and compassionate future for living together.
The film furthermore raises questions like: What are the light and shadow sides of different expressions of festivals? How are traditional festivals being re-interpreted? To what extent can (or should) festivals address sociocultural issues? Ultimately, we shall raise the question of what impact do cultural gatherings have on society?
We aim to distill answers to many of these questions in order to create new prototypes for forms of coming together, making music, feeling music, moving, dancing, sharing and bonding.
The film seeks to support mutual understanding and strengthen solidarity by illuminating examples of cultural frameworks that respond to our basic human need for honest experience and real connection.