It focuses on the everyday people who are finding healing and a sense of inner peace by singing mantras together with others just like them, but it also features the artists and musicians who are the focus of this new music-based movement. It’s a film about spirituality not religion, it’s about people reconnecting with their true selves and finding meaning in their lives.
As our characters’ stories about their connection to the music unfold, we meet the musicians who have inspired them deeply. Through these encounters, we will discover how Deva Primal & Miten, Krishna Das, Snatam Kaur, Lama Gyurme, Jai Uttal, MC Yogi and others came to this music themselves and to the practice of Kirtan*, and how, over the years, it transformed their lives too.
Kirtan is a participatory, call and response form of singing that is becoming increasingly popular throughout the world as westerners discover its uplifting and healing effects. Kirtan is not in any way religious but many do describe it as spiritual. At a Kirtan event, the lines between musician and audience are blurred: the audience members play a vital role in the music through their singing in response to the “call“ of the artist. It is now so popular that several artists, have been nominated and won Grammies.
How the project came together
Ever since she discovered the world of mantra in 2004, Georgia Wyss began developing her ideas on how to make a film recognising the importance of the practice of chanting mantras as a means of healing, a practice which she felt could benefit the lives of many.
In 2012 she arranged to meet Deva Premal and Miten during their first visit to Barcelona, and shared her ideas with them for a film about mantra chanting. They loved the idea and wanted to contribute, so the first filming started with them in 2013. That same year opportunities also arose to film and interview Krishna Das and Snatam Kaur in Barcelona, followed by the peace festival in Paris with a concert given by Lama Gyurme and Jean Philippe Rykiel. By now the project was officially born.
Continuing from this, with the valuable support of our core creative team, including co-director and cinematographer Wari Om, we set out to explore today's Kirtan movement both in the East and in the West.
Then in 2015, thanks to the support of our many generous crowd funders, we expanded the project to visit some of the most important Kirtan gatherings around the world, in the US, Greece and even Russia where we captured the phenomenon of people coming together to chant. Also, thanks to Wari's many trips to the East, we were able to capture the essence of the origins of Kirtan in Vrindavan, Rishikesh and Kathmandu.
We discovered the beauty of people from a diversity of spiritual paths, coming together all over the planet to chant mantras in a variety of musical styles, and the potential this has for creating a more peaceful and loving world.