War is escalating right now in Idlib, Syria. Children and adults have been suffering for years and on of their only reliefs were and are the performances of puppeteer Walid Abo Rashed who's developed a very peculiar style by telling enchanting tales with a very serious background and underlying messages related to survival in war, school dropouts, solidarity and the need to understand each other before entering into a conflict.
With his theatre, Walid develops, strengthens and take children out of the tragedy of war that is imposed upon them, drawing a smile on their war-weary faces.
Amal: The Soothing Voice Among the Ruins, is a feature length documentary directed by Jesús Manuel Montané that showcases Walid's work and recreates six of his puppet plays using 2D animation in some sequences.
We want people around the world to be aware of the conflict and give Walid the necessary resources to keep doing his performances.
In order to achieve that, we need your immediate help.
The money will be invested to continue shooting the documentary with absolute freedom, to allow Walid to keep performing and surviving in Syria and to create, in parallel, a stage show that will tour internationally.
This is an exclusive report on Walid's activities:
This, one of the plays that will be adapted for the movie in its original form:
And in this video, Walid talks about the project and thanks your support:
All profits will be donated to the NGO Al Caravan. This video encapsulates their work:
We've already started shooting in several Syrian locations and will continue doing it there, in China and Germany, from October until November 2019.
Movie will be finished by January 2020.
Jesús Manuel Montané. Director and Producer.
With a career spanning more than 25 years,, Jesús Manuel has done everything from animated and live action movies to music videos and commercials. His latest feature length film, Ushima-Next, featuring world-renowned playwrith and actor Fernando Arrabal, was premiered at the Sitges International Film Festival.
Walid Abo Rashed. Author and Puppeteer.
A self-taught artist with amazing talent, Walid started performing as a puppeteer for children and adults in Syria six years ago with one aim: to make them forget about the war and enjoy some moments of happiness and shared hope. He's succeeded.
Magos Herrera. Narrator.
Magos is one of the most recognizable voices in Latin music and her latest outing, Dreams, with Brooklyn Rider, has received rave reviews. She's a United Nation's spokeperson for UN Women UNITE, a program promoting the elimination of violence against women, and the UN's He For She campaign to promote gender equality. In 2011, she was selected along with Michelle Obama as one of the most important women of the year by Siempre Mujer.
Lico (Kehua Li). Dancer and Choreographer.
Lico is a member of the Beijing Dance Company and has become an international sensation thanks to her stunning YouTube videos.
Julia Kent. Film score composer and performer.
Julia's intriguing and emotionally intense mix of acoustic cello music and electronica made her a natural choice to write and perform the original soundtrack of the movie. Her most recent record, Temporal, came out in January 2019. Made up of mostly musical originally created to accompany dance and theatre, it is a meditation on the passing of time and the fragility of existence. In addition to her solo albums, Julia Kent has composed a number of original film scores, as well as music for theatre and dance performances.
Kevin Geiger. Animation Director and Executive Producer.
Resident in China since 2008, Kevin has enjoyed an innovative career as artist, animator, consultant, entrepreneur, professor, producer and executive, having worked for the likes of Walt Disney Future Animation and Richard Edlund's Boss Film Studios. In 2009, he co-founded Magic Dumpling Entertainment in Beijing; which is the company handling the 2D animated sequences of Amal: The Soothing Voice Among the Ruins.
Wen Feng. Animation Co-Director and Executive Producer.
A native of Taiwan, Wen Feng is an accomplished creative executive, producer, art director, prolific author, award-winning independent filmmaker and teacher. She's developed a range of original & adapted local animation & live-action properties, and produced four popular local broadcast series in China, incluing Disney's first Chinese TV co-production: Ban Jin Ba Ling.
Laura Eckert. Sculptress.
Laura makes impressive sculptures out of wood and stone. The human being is central to the theme in her work, within which she looks at the relation between what's cultural, social, biological and psychological. She's creating a piece that's pivotal in the movie and will be seen while designing and sculpting it.
Mohammad Bitari. Dramaturgy and adaptation of Walid's plays.
Poet, journalist and translator, Mohammad is a Syrian political exile living in Barcelona, Spain with an impressive body of work. He writes regularly for the Arab newspapers Al-Arabi Al-Jadid and As-Safr and the digital platform UltraSawt.
Julie Duchatel. Associate Producer.
Julie has studied prolitical sciences, international relations and development. She's invovled with several NGOs and the trade union movement and has translated into French the biography of Bobby Sands, Bobby Sands, nothing but an unfinished song, escrita por Dennis O'Hearn.