April 30, 2019

Through its lyrical structure, Chavela takes viewers on an evocative, thought-provoking journey through the iconoclastic life of game-changing artist Chavela Vargas. Centered around never-before-seen interview footage of Chavela shot 20 years before her death in 2012, and guided by the stories in Chavela’s songs, and the myths and tales others have told about her – as well as those she spread about herself – the film weaves an arresting portrait of a woman who dared to dress, speak, sing, and dream her unique life into being.
Winner of the Golden Athens Award for Best Documentary at Athens International Film Festival (2017), Audience Award & Grand Jury Prize at both OutFest L.A. and OUTshine Fort Lauderdale (2017), Audience Award & Honorable Mention Jury Award at Frameline (2017), Second Place Audience Award at Berlinale Film Festival (2017), Audience Award & Best Documentary Feature at Reeling35 (2017), Official Selection of AFI Docs, Hot Docs, Austin Gay & Lesbian Festival, Sheffield Doc/Fest and many more.
Directed by Catherine Gund & Daresha Kyi


Pre-show meet and greet with Film Director
Post-show panel discussion with the Film Director


“A wonderful tribute to a queer icon” – David Lewis, San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
“Dazzling. Poignant. Thoroughly enthralling.” – Claudia Puig, The Wrap Full Review
“Donald Trump’s ultimate nightmare – a Mexican lesbian diva who can wring your very soul.” – Jonathan Romney, The Guardian Full Review
“A trailblazing free spirit whose appetite for tequila and women was as legendary as her soul-stirring vocals…” – David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
“Legendary Mexican singer Chavela Vargas receives justifiably laudatory treatment in this documentary celebrating her
refusal to compromise together with her musical brilliance.” – Jay Weissberg, Variety Full Review
On Screen/In Person is a program of Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation made possible through the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts.