'Footsteps in Africa' is a feature length visual narrative art documentary with a diverse musical score, shot in the Sahara desert of Mali in January 2006.

It will be released beginning 2007, and premiered in Mali, during an Africa in conjunction with forums and performances.


The thematics of 'Footsteps in Africa' is based on the music and dance of the indigenous nomadic Tamashek (Tuareg) people. Footsteps do not only denote rhythm, dance and music, but also the trace in the earth that nomads leave when traversing harsh environments whilst following the natural flow of life. Footsteps are also the reminder of the harsh realities of resistance that nomadic peoples undergo and their survival in difficult political and environmental climates. 'Footsteps in Africa' captures the people in their element, investigates the music, the history, the present situation, and the ritual that everybody carries within to keep one's culture and heritage alive.

It is Kathi's belief that the wisdom that nomadic life entails - specifically in one of the harshest climates of the Sahara --- gives deep insight into humans' relationship to the earth, a transcendental frequency. The Tamashek, being keepers of ancient music and dance, allow the frequency to speak through them, their hearts, their music and melody. "Footsteps in Africa" is a film allowing its essence to speak for itself. A musical voyage.

Shot on location, Kiahkeya lived with the tribes in remote areas bordering Mali and Mauritania, and visited Tamashek Festivals. We thank the Tamashek people for such an incredible immersion, and all those beautiful people who have invited us into their homes and hearts.


In January 2006 Kiahkeya lead a caravan of dancers, artists and filmmakers in to the North African desert of Mali. The project 'Footsteps in Africa' is a cultural conversation between ancient ways and avant-garde world musicians utilizing their heritage in a modern context to awaken the spirit of nomadism in our over-ratified world. "Footsteps in Africa" explores the themes of trance, and the innate connection to reality in a transcendental way of life.

During their one-month journey in January 2006 Kiahkeya artists performed the show 'Intaka' at various festivals, such as the Festival in the Desert. They also created and recorded with local artists and performed in the villages.

During this trip with multiple cameramen and its versatile, adventurous crew Kiahkeya shot the feature documentary film 'Footsteps in Africa'.

In addition to the feature film, a short film will be compiled, portraying the value of the cross-cultural exchange between the multi-cultural performers of Kiahkeya and the Tamashek (Tuareg) people and other local Malian artists.

The project itself is a blueprint for further exploration in different parts of the world. "Footsteps in Africa" is the beginning of sequels to come.


Kathi von Koerber
T bird Luv aka Tonya Ridgely
Deva Hari Baumbach
Odin Ruz Hansberg

Film Team:

Produced & Directed by Kathi von Koerber.
Production/creative assistant: Fernando Velazquez.
DP 16 mm; Diego Benavente.
DP Video; Kika Vliegenthart.
Camera Assistant; Fernando Velazques, Kathi von Koerber.
Soundman: Odin Ruz Hansberg, Fernando Velazquez.
Photographer: Andreas Lang.
Translators: Lily Ladjivardi, Sahar Farmanfarmanian.
Guides: Almou Ansaar and Hamatha