71 MINUTES | Bulgarian, Turkish, Greek, Serbian, Bosnian, Macedonian, Albanian |
WHOSE IS THIS SONG?
It all begins in an Istanbul restaurant where the director Adela Peeva, a Bulgarian, is having dinner with friends from different Balkan countries -- a Greek, a Macedonian, and a Turk. Suddenly, a song is heard and each of the diners recognizes the melody -- and each claims that the song originated in his country. Determined to learn the truth -- and recalling that she herself had heard the song as a child -- Peeva sets off on an odyssey through the Balkans, to Turkey, Greece, Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, and Bulgaria. In each place the song is known, and through interviews with musicians and well-known singers and local stars of Balkan music, she realizes that the song has a different meaning in each country -- a love song, a military march, a Moslem religious song, a revolutionary song, an anthem of the right-wing nationalists, and so on. Alternately humorous and frightening, Whose Is This Song? uncovers truths not only about a region in turmoil, but about peoples' stubbornness and the madness of nationalism. The song, like the identities of those who claim it as their own, is shared by everyone, even if none of them want to admit it.