Brown Girl Begins

Block Heater is proud to present a special screening of Brown Girl Begins, a post-apocalyptic film about a young black woman is trapped in a world forced upon her. Ti-Jeanne, a reluctant priestess, must resurrect Caribbean spirits and survive the possession ritual that killed her mother or her people will die. The fantasy elements of Brown Girl Begins have their basis in Caribbean folklore, inspired by Nalo Hopkinson’s award winning novel, Brown Girl in the Ring. The film’s director, Sharon Lewis, will be in attendance and the screening will be bookended by performances by Yolanda Sargeant (of Calgary’s favourite duo Sargeant and Comrade) and other special guests.

Yolanda Sargeant

Yolanda Sargeant is an artist who believes “the purest definition of ‘Canadian’ music… is a bunch of cultures coming together creating something brand new.” Sargeant’s voice is simultaneously relaxing and exciting, like Bailey’s in your morning coffee. Her Caribbean family roots have left faint watermarks that colour her voice’s easy tone. Her vocal style is distinct; Billie Holiday, Lauryn Hill and Erykah Badu may try to hitch a ride, but it’s Sargeant steering the bus and collecting the fares. She is drawn to exploration; at home putting her voice to any manner of genres: ‘40s swing jazz, reggae or dance hall, Sargeant eagerly tries it all. Her rich, smoky vocals – playful or melancholy, joyful or pensive – act as the tour guide through the adventurous sounds of Calgary hip-hop duo Sargeant & Comrade. IS/CV/KC

Shakura S’Aida

You may have spotted Swiss-born, Brooklyn-raised and Canadian-based singer and actress Shakura S'Aida performing at a Festival in Dubai or Russia, on the Blues Cruise, at her one-woman show of Nina Simone’s music or acting in TV shows Lost Girl, Schitt’s Creek and Flashpoint. From her beginnings over 20 years ago as world music band Kaleefah’s lead singer, this versatile jazz/blues vocalist and consummate performer has blown audiences away with her scorching vocal style, uncanny ability to deliver powerful original songs and also get deep into the guts of the most venerable standard. CV/KC

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