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Breathe Umphefumlo

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"The striking and brutal realities of the students struggling for food, shelter and medication. Mimi's death from TB - and her illness unnoticed at first even by her closest friends - cannot but send a chilling chord in our modern world." A Cape Town-set reworking of Puccini’s La Bohème, sung in Xhosa (with some English dialogue).
'Breathe Umphefumlo' sees director Mark Dornford-May (U-Carmen eKhayelitsha) reunited with singer Pauline Malefane and the Isango Ensemble.
Berlinale 2015, Berlinale Special - World premiere


Type of film
Running Time
90 mins
Mark Dornford-May
Mark Dornford-May, Vlokkie Gordon
Christoph Bauer, Felix Blum, Florian Caspar Seibel (aka Richter)
Executive Producer
Mike Downey, Sam Taylor
Tanja Hagen
Mark Dornford-May, Pauline Malefane (based on La Bohème Librettos by Luigi Illica, Giuseppe Giacosa))
Director of Photography
Matthys Mocke
Production Designer
Birrie Le Roux
Mandisi Dyantyis, Pauline Malefane (Based on La Bohème by Giacomo Puccini)
Principal Cast
Pauline Malefane, Mhlekazi (Wha Wha) Mosiea, Busisiwe Ngejane, Sifiso Lupuzi, Luvo Rasemeni

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Last updated 2nd June 2015

Production Company

South Africa, UK, Germany coproduction

ARTE (DE), Advantage Entertainment (ZA), Film and Music Entertainment (F&ME) (UK), Isango Ensemble (ZA), Propeller Film (DE), Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen (ZDF) (DE)

Film & Music Entertainment Ltd. (F&ME)
Unit 25
Archer Street Studios
10/11 Archer Street
London W1D 7AZ
+44 (0) 203 713 0028