Watch Kids' Reviews of
HARRIET: THE BLACK SWAN IN THE YEAR OF COVID-19

What to know:
HARRIET: THE BLACK SWAN IN THE YEAR OF COVID-19 is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
Recommended age 5-18
34 minutes
VIDEO
KLAIR ETHRIDGE
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HARRIET: THE BLACK SWAN IN THE YEAR OF COVID-19 cover image
Harriet: The Black Swan In The Year of COVID-19 is an elegant children's ballet about Harriet Tubman's life, from slavery to freedom. Klair Ethridge, co-writer, director, narrator and co-choreographer, narrates this story with such a gentle touch that I could feel the inner beauty of each slave dancer as sentient human beings that love nature, fun and play, as we all do. The opening scene, Spring, made my eyes tear up as young Nya Zoe warms the screen with her facial expressions, dance movements and wholesome energy.

The narrator tells the story in short introductions to four chapters - spring, summer, autumn and winter - otherwise there is no dialogue and the dancing is underscored only by music. Each season represents a period of Harriet Tubman's life from age 5 until her older years as a freed woman with freed prot�g�s. On her trek to freedom Harriet expresses fear, beauty and courage through dance. In one scene she actually dances in the mud and water after crossing a river to freedom.

I love the brevity of the narrative, the dancing and the music. The locations are all outdoors in gorgeous gardens, fields and mountains - all captured by professional camerawork. I can't say enough good things about the music. The track entitled "Chi Mai" by composer Ennio Morricone (who passed away in 2021) is my favorite. Then again, there are at least eight different tracks used and every piece of music and every dance is a gorgeous, powerful and a true expression of talent. All the dancers wear masks when dancing together because of COVID-19 restrictions that were in place when this film was shot. When dancing as a soloist, no masks are worn and we see their beautiful smiles.

The message of this film is that the sweet human spirit can carry us far beyond our circumstances and into many worlds of happiness if we just remember to "Keep going!" - Hardiman and Ethridge

I give Harriet: The Black Swan In the Year of COVID-19 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Nancy K., KIDS FIRST!

Harriet: The Black Swan In The Year of COVID-19 is an elegant children's ballet about Harriet Tubman's life, from slavery to freedom. Klair Ethridge, co-writer, director, narrator and co-choreographer, narrates this story with such a gentle touch that I could feel the inner beauty of each slave dancer as sentient human beings that love nature, fun and play, as we all do. The opening scene, Spring, made my eyes tear up as young Nya Zoe warms the screen with her facial expressions, dance movements and wholesome energy.

The narrator tells the story in short introductions to four chapters - spring, summer, autumn and winter - otherwise there is no dialogue and the dancing is underscored only by music. Each season represents a period of Harriet Tubman's life from age 5 until her older years as a freed woman with freed prot�g�s. On her trek to freedom Harriet expresses fear, beauty and courage through dance. In one scene she actually dances in the mud and water after crossing a river to freedom.

I love the brevity of the narrative, the dancing and the music. The locations are all outdoors in gorgeous gardens, fields and mountains - all captured by professional camerawork. I can't say enough good things about the music. The track entitled "Chi Mai" by composer Ennio Morricone (who passed away in 2021) is my favorite. Then again, there are at least eight different tracks used and every piece of music and every dance is a gorgeous, powerful and a true expression of talent. All the dancers wear masks when dancing together because of COVID-19 restrictions that were in place when this film was shot. When dancing as a soloist, no masks are worn and we see their beautiful smiles.

The message of this film is that the sweet human spirit can carry us far beyond our circumstances and into many worlds of happiness if we just remember to "Keep going!" - Hardiman and Ethridge

I give Harriet: The Black Swan In the Year of COVID-19 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 5 to 18, plus adults. Reviewed by Nancy K., KIDS FIRST!

Four seasons of the life of Harriet Tubman are told through ballet. Spring Harriet: An enslaved girl; Summer Harriet: A young woman reaching for freedom; Autumn Harriet: A woman leading enslaved people to freedom; Winter Harriet: A mature woman reminisces about her purposeful life.
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