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Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Documentary Review: #ImbaMeansSing Gives A Sense Of Hope

Instead of feeling bad or guilty it gives a sense of hope and positivity that these children are making a difference in the lives of others and especially for themselves

Review By: Erika Ashley

A light hearted yet impactful view of how a group of children from Africa are changing their lives among many others through song and faith.

Imba Means Sing is a short documentary following 20 specially selected children from Uganda who tour for 18 months throughout the Unites States, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom to raise awareness and funds for their education. Although the African Children’s Choir is comprised of 20 children ranging in ages the film follows three specific kids - Moses, Nina, and Angel, during their journey.

The film opens documenting the children’s struggle in Uganda, showing what limited and sometimes non-existent support and resourced they have from their families and community to give them an education. The children live in shacks made of mud and sticks, often times sharing one large room divided into sleeping and eating quarters for an entire family. They lack indoor plumbing and basic electricity. Children in America would consider their daily lives as rough camping while these African kids manage to still stay happy and uplifted holding out hope for a brighter future. They are ecstatic knowing that they have been given an opportunity of a lifetime to join the African Children’s Choir to build a real chance at a prosperous future.

The rest of the film takes place on the road where the group of children accompanied with volunteers and two leaders that were a part of the choir when they were kids drive in a huge bus from one church to another singing and performing. During their performances the choir leaders explain how the children are there to perform to spread good faith and in hopes they will receive sponsorships and contributions for their education when they return home to Uganda. Before each performance the children gather to pray for courage, guidance and mostly to answer the prayers of their families back home. They then sing and dance their best in hopes that they can raise more money for their education and future.

Imba Means Sing is well shot and keeps a steady pace. The children and their constant happiness even during trying times pulls on the viewers heartstrings. Instead of feeling bad or guilty it gives a sense of hope and positivity that these children are making a difference in the lives of others and especially for themselves. There is a strong religious undertone throughout the documentary but it isn’t meant to be propaganda or pursued the viewer in anyway, which is refreshing from other documentaries that focus on the religion over the message.

I would highly suggest you watch this film with an open mind and especially with your children or family. It gives a great perspective on how real change can happen at any age when you put your mind to something and it give it everything you have to succeed. These children are a bright light in a dim world and hopefully this film will give them an even larger stage to shine.

Imba Means Sing has a runtime of 75 minutes.

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