Salsa, un tumbao' caribeño (Salsa, A Caribbean Flow) explores this beloved genre's legacy and cultural movement from the heart of Caribbean barrios to New York City and beyond. Afro-Venezuelan director Beni Marquez draws on his own story and unique perspective as an Afro-Latino filmmaker, immigrant and artist, alongside interviews with celebrated artists, community activists, dancers, and everyday people to engage in conversations about salsa, its roots, and its repercussions today.
Director, Screenwriter, Cinematographer
Beni Marquez, Director is an Afro-Venezuelan filmmaker from San Agustin, Caracas whose work includes documentary features, music video direction, as well as television and radio production. In 2022, Beni was selected for the prestigious Cucalorus and Working Films Work-in-Progress Immersive Lab for Black Directors in North Carolina. From The Heart Productions also named Salsa one of its "Hot Films in the Making."
His last feature documentary film, Mamá África (2018), tells the story of the spiritual and cultural connections between Nigeria and Venezuela and toured extensively in 2019-2021. Mamá África was featured in the Rhode Island Black Film Festival (2021), Pan-African Film Festival (2020), Black Communities Conference (2019), and Afro-Latino Film Festival (2019) as well as other renowned festivals, universities, and organizations. Beni is also the audiovisual and social media architect behind Drummer Sessions, an international, multimedia platform dedicated to the diffusion and promotion of Afro-Caribbean percussion. He is currently based in Los Angeles.
"My passion to document salsa’s history comes from my ancestral and cultural ties. My roots in San Agustin, a working-class Venezuelan barrio, have shaped my outlook as a filmmaker, screenwriter, and storyteller. Growing up in a creative family and neighborhood nurtured me. Inevitably, salsa was present and inspired who I am."
- Director Beni Marquez
Salsa has transcended in time and across geographies, these are among the reasons that our film insists that: salsa must be named one of UNESCO’S intangible cultural heritages, the highest global honor for any cultural expression. Salsa’s joy is manifested through: dance, song, music, celebrations in el barrio, and in daily life present in cities like Caracas, New York, La Habana, and San Juan. This demonstrates, as Dir. Marquez states, that “salsa never died, it became eternal.”
Our Social & Historic Responsibility