Africa Direct

A Stone Crusher’s Song: A Nigerian grandmother-turned-singer

A grandmother in Jos, Nigeria goes from breaking rocks for a living to rocking social media with her song.

Hamsatu Izang sings out as she hammers rocks into small gravel pieces for the construction industry.

Singing brings her joy and peace, she says, amid this hard manual labour. But when a local music producer hears her song, her life takes a surprising turn and a whole new world opens up.

This film follows Mama Hamsatu as she navigates two very different realities, her work as a lifelong stone crusher and a new role as a singing star, in the hope that her new success might bring lasting change.

Dorcas Sheffy Bello is a multimedia journalist and filmmaker from Jos, Nigeria. She is the founder of Unzipped Stories Africa, and has won awards for scriptwriting and reporting. Her documentary on polio, Not All Darkness, has won many regional plaudits.