Can family and music help a country find its way back from crisis?

Chris Silver has watched A FAMILY AFFAIR, our latest addition to the MOVING DOCS Home Cinema. 

“In order to find yourself you need to get lost. But if you lose yourself you need to find your way back.”

These words of wisdom are spoken by Cretan musical legend George Xylouris, to his son Nick, as they practice together in a cramped apartment while on tour in northern Europe during a scene in the Greek/Australian documentary A Family Affair.

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The words are, no doubt, one of countless lessons that have formed part of the young man’s lifelong apprenticeship as a member Greece’s most renowned musical clan. Indeed, the wild, largely improvised traditional music of Crete of which they are exponents, is itself like a great rambling exploration of the wilderness – a journey that is never quite the same – but always finally returns to the village having learned something.

This key fragment of fatherly advice also speaks to a searing question that the film asks – what does it mean to carry traditions into the future in a time of often troubling change? 

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Outdoor beach screening in Cyprus

The Lemessos International Documentary Festival organised an outdoor beach screening of A Family Affair.

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A Family Affair - Moving Docs

A FAMILY AFFAIR is an intimate portrait of three generations of musicians of the Xylouris family who uphold and pass on the vibrant tradition of Cretan music performing ceaselessly to followers across the world. The film follows Greece’s most famous musical clan to discover the electrifying power of their music and the sacred ties that hold the family together.