Rita Chiarelli is known in some circles as the “goddess of Canadian blues.”
In 2010, the guitarist-singer ventured to Louisiana State Penitentiary (aka Angola Prison) to meet the musician-inmates there.
“Music from the Big House” is a visceral documentary of Chiarelli’s journey that spotlights some of the inmates – musicians and songwriters incarcerated for rough crimes – and shares how they use music to cope with their situations.
The point of Chiarelli’s visit is also to perform a concert with the inmates – “So their music could be heard,” she says – not just standing on a stage performing for them.
The movie opens Friday at the Plaza Theater and Chiarelli will be on hand for a Q&A and live performance following the 7:30 p.m. screening. She’ll stick around in town on Saturday, too, for a daytime performance after the 10:30 a.m. showing at Sandy Springs Lefont Theater.
Check out the trailer below. Info on the soundtrack to the film can be found on Chiarelli’s website.