The Spirituals

An indigenous American music form has bitter histories seen through the work of a world-renown contemporary spiritual group.

Film Signature Image
PBS Plus Presentation
Premiere Date
July 1, 2007
30 minutes
Funding Initiative
Open Call

Eren Isabel McGinnis

Eren Isabel McGinnis has produced 19 movies including P.O.V.'s Tobacco Blues, The Girl Next Door (shortlisted for an Oscar!), Beyond the Border, The Spirituals, and Dos Vatos-México. She has a degree in Cultural Anthropology from San Diego State University, and a certificate in Film and Video Theory and Production from the University College Dublin, in Show more Ireland. McGinnis, a Fulbright scholar, spent a year of living, writing, and filmmaking in Juchitán, México. She is currently in training for the grueling El Tour de Tucson bike ride and enjoys hiking in the Sonoran desert or any place where there is a trail to the mountaintop. Show less


Ari Luis Palos

Ari Luis Palos has directed and shot a number of films including: The Beauty Salon, Mas Alla de la Frontera/Beyond the Border, Impresario, The Kentucky Theatre, El Rio de los Perros/The River of the Dogs, Al Garete/Adrift, Corazon del Plata/Heart of Silver, and The Spirituals. Palos enjoys participating in Tucson’s All Soul’s Procession; a performance Show more art extravaganza where he transforms into a dead vaquero to mourn and celebrate loved ones who have passed. He once rode a Harley Davidson motorcycle from Oaxaca, México to a small factory in Nicaragua, just to smoke the world’s finest cigar. Show less

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The Film

An indigenous American art form born out of the fields and plantation houses of the South, the spiritual also served as a covert mode of communication between slaves. The Spirituals recounts the spiritual's bitter histories through the work of a world-renown contemporary spiritual group dedicated to keeping the music alive.