Pan African Film & Arts Festival

The Pan African Film & Arts Festival (PAFF), is happening now in Los Angeles. The film “God Said Give ‘Em Drum Machines” will make its LA premiere on February 16th! This festival showcases a wide range of Black creative works, especially those that reinforce positive images and aid in dispelling negative stereotypes of Africans and African-Americans. Since its founding in 1992, PAFF has been committed to advancing Black narratives and images through film, visual art, and other forms of artistic expression. Attracting local, national, and worldwide audiences, PAFF is currently one of the biggest and most prestigious Black film festivals in the United States. Additionally, it is one of the biggest Black History Month celebrations in America and an Oscar-qualifying festival for live-action and animated movies.

The Pan African Film Festival (PAFF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was founded in 1992 by Hollywood veterans Danny Glover (The Color Purple, Lethal Weapon), the late Ja’Net DuBois (Good Times), and Ayuko Babu (Executive Director). It has remained committed to the promotion of Black stories and images through the exhibition of film, visual art, and other forms of creative expression.

The Roland Beat Garden

Young people in LA had the opportunity to use drum machines and learn how to program beats at an event called The Beat Garden, while also learning about the history of Blacks in electronic music at the PAFF Children’s Festival. Young people could engage with new and vintage, electronic music instruments like the Roland TR-808 or the TR-303 at The Beat Garden. This was a FREE experience designed to give them an understanding of the history of techno. In recognition of Black History Month, the Music Origins Project also debuted The Detroit Techno 101 curriculum at the Roland Beat Garden to enable classrooms across the country to learn about the Afro American Roots of Detroit Techno.

For more than 30 years, PAFF has served as the cinema and arts community’s international compass. Every year, the PAFF brings influential filmmakers, artists, and one-of-a-kind craftspeople from more than 40 nations and six continents to Los Angeles to exhibit their skills and creativity. PAFF has established itself as the premier international festival of Pan-African traditions.

PAFF was sponsored in part by the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell through the Department of Arts and Culture, LA Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson, LA Councilmember Curren Price, LA Councilmember Heather Hutt, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, LA Arts COVID-19 Relief Fund with the California Community Foundation, and the LA County COVID-19 Arts Relief Fund administered by the LA County Department of Arts and Culture.

Learn More about the Film “God Said Give ‘Em Drum Machines” here.



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