(Image credit: Faith & Branko by Catherine Harte)

As part of our Autumn programme, films from our Rhyme & Rhythm strand will screen in the cinema in Sheffield and online in parallel from 30 October.

Rhyme & Rhythm is where cinema and other art forms meet, including music. Each film offering one artistic expression within another, including through folk music, classical and electronica.

These portraits of musicians and journeys through music help us also to seize the world and to cross borders. From the UK, through Serbia, to Argentina, a diverse range of creative talent both in front of and behind the camera rock and shine in this year’s Rhyme & Rhythm selection, offering encounters and inspirations to a different beat. 

BRING DOWN THE WALLS is an exploration of the coinciding escalation of mass incarceration in 1980s America with Chicago house music; MEDIUM offers a portrait of pianist and artist Margarita Fernandez whose brilliant mind and artistic personality glows in this cinematographic encounter; SISTERS WITH TRANSISTORS tells the remarkable story of electronic music’s unsung heroines, as told by the pioneers themselves and through their music; and in FAITH AND BRANKO, love crosses borders and cultural barriers when British accordion player Faith and Serbian violinist Branko form a gypsy folk duo.

The Rhyme & Rhythm weekender takes place at The Showroom Cinema in Sheffield Friday 30 October – Sunday 1 November, with all titles screening online in parallel, and available until Thursday 12 November. All titles will be available on Selects for public audiences across the UK, and on Doc/Player for Digital Passholders internationally.

Select titles from the Rhyme & Rhythm strand, as part of our 2020 official selection include:

Friday 30 October

FAITH AND BRANKO  + live online Q&A with director Catherine Harte, in conversation with our Deputy Director Melanie Iredale, plus a virtual performance from Faith & Branko - 18:00

Catherine Harte, UK / Serbia, 2020, 82’ - World Premiere

This intimate story chronicles the relationship between musicians Faith and Branko over seven years. In 2011, Faith travels from England to Serbia to learn gypsy accordion. She meets Roma violinist Branko and despite language barriers, they fall in love through music. Captivated by their musical chemistry, they marry and take their duo abroad. As much as Faith is free-spirited and privileged, Branko is untraveled and attached to his family, but they each believe that the other will better their lives. The relationship is tested by the realisation of their differences and that music may be all they have in common.

Available to watch online from 30 October – 20:00 until midnight 12 November. 

Presented in partnership with Live Cinema UK, supported by Film Hub North, proud to be part of the BFI Film Audience Network.

Saturday 31 October


Phil Collins, USA / Germany, 2020, 88’

With a prison population of more than 2 million, the USA is the world's biggest jailer. Coinciding with the escalation of mass incarceration in the 1980s, house music emerged from Black, Latinx and queer communities embattled by oppressive law enforcement policies. Bring Down The Walls explores the prison industrial complex through the lens of house music and nightlife, proposing the dance floor as a space of personal and collective liberation, and new ways in which we could come together as a society.

Screening in cinema only as part of our Community Screening Programme.

Presented in partnership with No Bounds Festival.

Saturday 31 October

SISTERS WITH TRANSISTORS + live online Q&A with director Lisa Rovner, in conversation with our Deputy Director Melanie Iredale, plus short pre-recorded performance from The Space Lady. - 17:00

Lisa Rovner, UK, 2020, 82’ - European Premiere

The remarkable story of electronic music's unsung heroines narrated by Laurie Anderson. Pioneering composers such as Maryanne Amacher, Bebe Barron, Suzanne Ciani, Delia Derbyshire, Pauline Oliveros, Daphne Oram, Eliane Radigue, Clara Rockmore and Laurie Spiegel were inventing the sounds of the future with tape recorders, the first synthesisers and early computers the size of a room. When electronic music was finally recognised, they were almost forgotten. Director Lisa Rovner rectifies this injustice with rare archives showing their wild creativity. Your senses will thank you.

Available to watch online from 31 October – 19:00 until midnight 23:59 12 November. 

Presented in partnership with No Bounds Festival and with Live Cinema UK, supported by Film Hub North, proud to be part of the BFI Film Audience Network.


Sunday 1 November

MEDIUM + pre-recorded Q&A with director Edgardo Cozarinsky, in conversation with our Associate Programmer Agnès Wildenstein - 11:00

Edgardo Cozarinsky, Argentina, 2020, 71’ - UK Premiere

This portrait of the pianist and artist Margarita Fernandez combines archive footage of performances, along with scenes of her playing piano pieces in their entirety. Through telling her thoughts about music and art, and about Brahms in particular, the film builds a bridge between past and present. Fernandez’ brilliant mind and artistic personality glows in this cinematographic encounter through the sensitive gaze of Edgardo Cozarinsky, one of Argentina’s most respected writers and directors.

Available to watch online from 1 November – 13:00 until midnight 23:59 12 November.