10th edition CIFF – 10-14 April 2024

Landfill Harmonic (2016 Feature Film)

Graham Townsley | Brad Allgood | USA, Paraguay, Norway, Brazil | 2015 | 84 min | Spanish | e.s.

Violins, flutes, drums: the instruments played by the members of the poverty-stricken Paraguayan youth orchestra in the documentary Landfill Harmonic are made from waste. The film explains how music has unexpectedly offered these children a brighter future.

In one of South America’s poorest neighbourhoods, adjacent to a landfill, where an ordinary violin or a flute is more expensive than the average home, the children are forced to play instruments created from the waste the orchestra members find at the gigantic landfill. A lot can be made from what they scavenge there: violins, flutes, drums. Landfill Harmonic tells the moving story of this group of children. The poverty-stricken children of Caturea, Paraguay only knew their poor surroundings until environmental expert and music teacher Flavio Chavez decided to give them music lessons in 2006. By playing famous classical pieces by composers such as Beethoven and Mozart in the orchestra room, the 30 students can escape the abject poverty they live in. One of the young orchestra members says in the documentary that her life would be worthless without music. Thanks to the music, she travels the world now. The children have even played in the Netherlands.

Place: CINEMA 4

Date: 7 April 2016

Time: 17:00

Duration: 1:30

Place: CINEMA 4

Date: 8 April 2016

Time: 22:15

Duration: 1:30

Place: CINEMA 4

Date: 10 April 2016

Time: 14:15

Duration: 1:30

Year in



Graham Townsley
Brad Allgood


Brad Allgood
Neil Barrett
Tim Fabrizio




Brad Allgood
Jorge Maldonado




84 min


Michael A. Levine


Juliana Penaranda-Loftus

Production Company

Hidden Village Films


Hidden Village Films

Year of Production



Graham TOWNSLEY is a Canadian-British producer, director and author. He received his doctorate in anthropology from Cambridge University and is a research fellow at the College de France in Paris. Townsley has produced and directed documentaries for, among others, PBS, National Geographic and Discovery Channel.

Brad ALLGOOD studied Film and Video Production, Biology and Geology. He has directed, photographed and edited many independent productions, including the award-winning documentary Landfill Harmonic. While working for PBS Marketing and Communications, he produced promotional campaigns for several PBS programs. Before transitioning to filmmaking, Brad spent 3½ years as a volunteer in the Peace Corps in rural Nicaragua.



Graham Townsley

(selection) Treasure Seekers (2001, TV doc series), Dawn of the Maya (2005, TV doc series), Landfill Harmonic (2015, doc, co-dir)

Brad Allgood

(selection, all doc, co-dir)Songs from Bosawas (2014, short), Landfill Harmonic (2015)