The 4th Festiwal Muzyki Filmowej, Nowa Huta Steelworks, Krakow.

Last night I had one of my favourite things- press passes to an event and no crushing deadline. This event was the Festiwal Muzyki Filmowej (the Festival of Film Music), held inside the incredible tinning plant of the Nowa Huta steelworks. Nowa Huta is a whole story of its own, a gargantuan site built under communism and now owned by ArcelorMittal. Have a look at this on Google Maps and see the scale of the plant:

Now then look at the town beside it, which was also built to house the workers. It’s huge, and alternately stunning and very ugly. I’m doing a project there at the moment so more on that another time.

Outside the main gates, a shot which doesn't really do the overbearing nature of the architecture justice.

The view from the back of the Tinning Plant Hall, Nowa Huta steelworks.

As the crowds were waiting to enter the steelworks (to give an idea of the plant’s scale, buses were on hand to take them from the main gate to the hall), two ladies from RMF Classic, a radio station which is one of the major sponsors, were on hand dressed like severe airline hostesses to greet the crowds as they came in.

One of the RMF Classic greeters sends a text message while waiting for the gates to open.

The RMF Classic greeters adjust their hair and uniforms before the gates open.

My excuse for attending the festival was under the auspices of photographing for the Off Plus Camera festival. Also along for the ride were three festival volunteers, including Ela.

Ela, who in her spare time is helping me with my Nowa Huta documentary project. Hire her, she's great.

Two ladies, some of the first arrivals, sit waiting for the hall to fill up.

The interior of the hall, complete with 'War of the Worlds' lighting. A really fitting space.

The only slight problem I had with the festival was that the photographers were confined to a box 30 yards back from the stage and forbidden from moving. This seemed a little strong until the music started, when they began to talk loudly, elbow and jostle and generally be a pain. However, as somebody who is a) generally skint and b) not primarily a press photographer, my longest lens is a 70mm, which most photographers will tell you is pretty much redundant for photographing people a long way away. So the rest of the photographing window (the first 30mins of the music) went pretty much like this:

Joe Hisaishi, the composer of many of the Studio Ghibli soundtracks including such greats as 'Spirited Away' and 'Princess Mononoke", conducts as Wioletta Chodowicz sings.

The audience.

Joe Hisaishi and the Sinfonietta Cracovia take a bow.

The music was spectacular and the surroundings strangely fitting. I should be going again on Saturday and will try to scrounge a long lens before that. Lets hope I can get a bit more regular with my postings too.

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About Muzungu

I’m a Uganda-based freelance photographer (and occasional writer) working for a broad range of clients including NGOs, newspapers and magazines and development agencies. My work has taken me across East Africa, South America and Europe, and previous clients include USAID, the World Bank and the East African. I also work on personal documentary projects in my spare time. If you’d like to hire me or to know more, please feel free to get in touch.
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3 Responses to The 4th Festiwal Muzyki Filmowej, Nowa Huta Steelworks, Krakow.

  1. Pingback: Inside the Slabbing Plant, Nowa Huta, Krakow. | The Mzungu Diaries

  2. Naprawdę interesujący post.
    Z pewnością jeszcze tutaj zaglądnę.

  3. Naprawdę interesujący post.
    Pozdrawiam i czekam na więcej

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