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© 2019 Studio Birthplace

Music Video - 2016
Directed by Sil van der Woerd

Mantra chronicles the dangerous obstacles that refugees and migrants face on their journeys to reach safer harbours.

 

In 2016, there were many stories in the news about refugees and migrants arriving in Europe. Most of these stories were told from a political or dramatic angle. When we met these people in person, we above all encountered kindness and strength. We set out to tell a powerful story about the risks that they were willing to take to reach safety or a better living standard.

We filmed the video for Dutch Drum and Bass act Noisia in Sicily in Italy, and in the Netherlands in a special pool where we recreated the dangerous boat scenes.

 

Except 2 of the 3 dancers and the 2 cops, all the people portrayed in the video are actual refugees from Syria, and migrants from Afghanistan, Ghana, Mali, Nigeri and Somalia. Some fled from wars, others had economic reasons.

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 When we filmed the migrants in Sicily, they had arrived to the European main land just days earlier. All of them spent some part of their journey on a boat. Some 'only' a few hours, others as long as 7 days, often without enough water and food. Some were witness to their friends or family drowning during the crossing of the Mediterranean Sea.

 

During production we shared several dinners with the migrants and they would share their stories which were often daggers to the heart. They were often mixed with stories of joy.

 

The painting featured in the video is made by Syrian refugee Khattar Shaheen.

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