Rudy Plaate is known as the “singing greengrocer” of Curaçao, who sang of his love for the island on his big hit “Atardi.” The song has become his country’s unofficial national anthem. In this chronological homage to the singer-songwriter, it’s mostly other people who tell the story of his life. Plaate, who was born in 1937, now has dementia, and the twinkling eyes we see in the archive footage have dimmed a little. His wife Emily and a whole string of other family members, fellow musicians, and friends talk with affection and respect about this versatile and self-assured man. Each new chapter in his life is marked by an ultrashort animation.
Emmy was his tower of strength, keeping both the shop and plantation running while Rudy found success as a tennis player and singer-songwriter. As a singer, he was a passionate champion of songs in the local Papiamento language, and he became known in pop media through his jingles in his native language and ads tailored to the local culture. Old photos and film and television clips are used to illustrate this tribute to one of the founders of Curaçao’s popular music culture.