Songs of Repression

85 min.DK/Documentary

In 1961, the German preacher Paul Schäfer and his congregation moved to Chile with the stated aim of helping the poor. They established Colonia Dignidad which transformed into a closed sect. This film explores how the remaining residents of the colony deal with 45 years of child abuse, collective beatings and slave-like living conditions. It also reveals how people in the colony assisted Pinochet’s dictatorship in torturing and killing political prisoners and burying them in mass graves on their own 16,000-hectare land. We meet those who completely deny the horrors and wish to only remember the bright moments, those who still today go through severe emotional struggles – and those caught in between.
Basic information Credits Festivals & awards
Original title Undertrykkelsens sang
Danish title Undertrykkelsens sang
Other titles Songs of Repression
Director Estephan Wagner, Marianne Hougen-Moraga
Producer Signe Byrge Sørensen, Heidi Elise Christensen
Director of Photography Estephan Wagner, Marianne Hougen-Moraga
Editor Niels Pagh Andersen, Estephan Wagner
Sound Jan Schermer
Production country Denmark
Production companies Final Cut for Real ApS
International sales Autlook Filmsales / Spittelberggasse 3/14 / 1070 Wien / t +43 670 208 7881 / welcome@autlookfilms.com / autlookfilms.com
Comment Winner of the main competition at CPH:DOX. Estephan Wagner co-directed the acclaimed ’Les sauteurs’ which premiered at the Berlinale 2016.
DFI subsidy Konsulentstøtte


Production companies Final Cut for Real ApS
With support from Det Danske Filminstitut


Direction Estephan Wagner
Direction Marianne Hougen-Moraga


Producer Signe Byrge Sørensen
Producer Heidi Elise Christensen
Executive producer Joshua Oppenheimer
Executive producer Bruno Betatti
Co-producer Marleen Slot
Post Producer Francesc Sitges Sardá
Post Producer Maria Kristensen
Post Producer Esther Nissen
Production assistant Aoibhe Jessen
Production assistant Stine Møldrup Sørensen
Production assistant Tora Jensen
Production assistant Sidsel Philipsen
Production assistant Frederikke Møller Helvad
Production assistant Megumi Arita
Production assistant Jonathan Gyasi Sampson
Technical assistant Mauricio Gonzalez-Aranda
Technical assistant Waltteri Vanhanen


Cinematographer Estephan Wagner
Cinematographer Marianne Hougen-Moraga


Editor Niels Pagh Andersen
Editor Estephan Wagner


Sound designer Jan Schermer
ADR mixer Peter Schultz

Visual effects

Technical supervisor Anders V. Christensen
Graphic design Troels Faber
Graphic design Ian Bennett

Awards and nominations

Award Year Festival
Politiken DOX award 2020 CPH:DOX 2020

Festival screenings

Festival Festival date
Docsbarcelona 2020-05-13
München Documentary Festival 2020-05-06
CPH:DOX 2020-03-18
Det Danske Filminstitut registrerer international festivaldeltagelse og priser til danske film, dog primært de titler, som Filminstituttet varetager i sin festivaldistribution, og primært i forbindelse med de festivaler, som Filminstituttet har prioriteret at samarbejde med. Registreringen af festivaldeltagelse og priser til danske film, der ikke er i festivaldistribution, foretages kun for "launch"-festivaler ifølge Filminstituttets prioriterede festivalliste. Se listen over prioriterede festivaler.