From Mali to Michigan: A Musical Bridge is a documentary about musical collaboration in the global age. The program details the visit of African World Music pop diva Naïny Diabaté to the Upper Peninsula and her extraordinary collaboration with local artists. The program follows this soulful bluesy bard as she jams with North American musicians---session base guitarist Dave Ziegner, Canadian-born keyboardist Marco Volcy, and djembe drummer Brin Jungwirth. Ms. Diabaté is accompanied on the West African 21 stringed harp-lute played by kora virtuoso Mady Kouyaté. Mr. Kouyaté, whose adopted home is Ypsilanti, Michigan, is known to downstate audiences through his musical group Mady Kouyaté and the Heat of Africa.
From Mali to Michigan’s heart stopping sounds easily compliment its breathtaking visuals. Location footage juxtaposes the edge of the Sahara with the shores of Lake Superior. “From Mali to Michigan” received the 2007 Michigan Association of Broadcasters Best in Category Award for Arts and Cultural Production. It is also the winner of a 2007 “Good News Award", a TV broadcast honor that recognizes programs that affirm positive values and uplift the human spirit.