Carnegie Mellon University

Center for the Arts in Society

Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences and College of Fine Arts


Syrian Dinner & a Movie: Sugar Cage with filmmaker Zeina Al Qahwaji

CAS Dinner & a Movie Series

February 28, 2024 - 5:00pm-7:30pm
Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry (CFA 111)

CAS has sponsored this event in support of CMU's Artists and Scholars at Risk (ASAR) program.

In the short documentary Sugar Cage Zeina Al Qahwaji trains her camera on the intimate life of her aging parents over the course of eight years, from the beginning of a civil movement to the outbreak of war in Syria. Sugar Cage observes scenes of isolation, fear, and stagnancy that overshadow life at home, yet also shows how love bonds her subjects together against the heaviness of time and war. In 2021 Sugar Cage won the Best Feature Documentary award at the challenging 22nd edition of the Ismailia International Film Festival for Documentaries and Shorts.

Zeina Al Qahwaji is a Syrian documentary filmmaker.  She started working in the documentary film industry in 2010. In 2017, she obtained her Master’s degree in documentary filmmaking at the DOC NOMADS Erasmus Mundus Joint Master Degree program. She currently works and lives in Belgium, where she is in the process of developing her next feature.

Join us for a discussion with the film’s director, Zeina Al Qahwaji, a screening of the film,and a delicious meal catered by Ali Baba. This event will be moderated by writer and filmmaker Reem Alghazzi.

The CAS "Dinner and a Movie" Series is co-sponsored by the Humanities Scholars Program - Kim and Eric Giler Humanities Lectures Fund, the Sustainability Initiative, and the Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry.