Marilena Delli

My history

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My mother said I was always curious, since birth. My theme song growing-up was "Viaggiare" ("Traveling") by Battisti -I actually used to force my sister to sing it as a background voice (shame on me)! I loved writing journals and even founded a newspaper in Junior High. Later, I wrote for the University paper as a cinema critic. I started traveling abroad when I was 16 and since then never stopped. That's pretty much my life: pack and go, return home briefly, wash my stuff and then repack. My camera is always with me and there seems to be a music-project to keep me busy wherever I go.

In 2010, I worked on "Tassili" as an interpreter and videographer. The record went on to win a Grammy for Best World Music Record in 2011.

That same year I started shooting the documentary "Rwanda' Mama" about my mother's return to her homeland for the first time after 30 years away. The film was officially selected at the Festival of Cinema in South Africa.

I also worked on "Kigali Y'zabu" (Kigali of Gold) by roots band, The Good Ones from Rwanda. 

In 2011 I worked on Jovanotti's first U.S. record "Italia 1988-2012" and shot his video "New York for Life" plus directed a documentary about the making of the album, which was screened at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles.

In Malawi, I worked on "He is #1", the first record of acclaimed band the Malawi Mouse Boys. I've become their official videographer and have followed them on tour all over the world.

In 2012 I went to the youngest state in the world, South Sudan, and worked on the record "Trance Percussion Masters of South Sudan" (and had a lot of fun, btw) by the Wayo tribe. I also worked on the Acholi Machon record "Lamwong" (Freedom Fighters) and General Paolino's "South Sudan Street Survivors".

I also visited Kenya, where I worked with the "West Bridge Band" on the record "Kibera Esbera".

In 2013, I worked on the Malawi Mouse Boys' new record "Dirt is Good" and started a new project in the Maximum Security Prison of Zomba (Malawi): "I Have No Everything Here". The album got nominated for the Grammy's 2016.

I flew to Big Sur that fall to work with Bob Forrest from band "Thelonius Monsters". It's his first solo album ever.

In 2014, I worked on the Good Ones' new record, "Rwanda is My Home", which marks the 20th anniversary from the genocide.

That same year I went to Palestine and worked with famous Palestinian rapper Tamer Nafar and his group, DAM.

I travelled to Vietnam that summer to work on the photos and the music video for "Hanoi Masters", a collection of songs to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War.

At the end of 2014, I worked on Malawi Mouse Boys third album "Forever is 4 you".

In Angers I worked on the record "Like a bird or spirit, not a face" by Tuvan throat singer Sainkho Namtchylak, released in 2016 with the collaboration of members of Tinariwen.

In June 2015 I flew to Cambodia to work with artist Arn Chorn-Pond and blues legend Kong Nai.

In August I worked in Transylvania with indie band Zmitrei.

In January 2016 I traveled to Rwanda for a top secret project in the hills of Butare and then back to Malawi to personally announce the Grammy nomination to the prisoners of Zomba Prison Project. The US Tv Show 60 Minutes was there with us and the segment got nominated for 3 Emmys in 2017.

In June 2016 I worked on a new record on Ukerewe island: "Tanzania Albinism Collective", released on June 2017.

This year, various projects lead me back to Africa, America, Asia...and hopefully, beyond!