6.16.17: All Roads Lead To Botev

Hristo Botev: poet, revolutionary, hero, icon. As we drift endlessly through the streets of Vratsa over an intensive two day production period, we see his image and feel his influence everywhere: the giant statue in the square of course, but also his words printed on apartment buildings, his image painted on the walls of underpasses, his deeds and beliefs spoken with reverence by people young and old. Mixing this imposing presence into a fever dream of deserted streets, stray animals, vexing bakers, Little Dubai at dawn, tagged train cars, singing coffee machines, overgrown cemeteries, poppies nodding with a million buzzing bees, rows of Soviet-style apartment blocks, tiny tot-driven monster trucks, an international folk parade led by Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and a giant baby chicken, a prog-rock band that uses traditional instruments and a laser light show to take their endless jams into the stratosphere, fireworks, disaffected skater dudes and those ever-looming mountains feels like living a delerious Bugarian version of Groundhog Day meets 8 1/2.

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Paolo Davanzo and Lisa Marr travel the world, sharing movies and music with the masses. At home in Los Angeles, they facilitate community screenings and workshops at the Echo Park Film Center, a non-profit media arts organization.

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