In a box with her grandmother’s diaries, letters, photographs and Super 8 footage, Sylvie Bianchi discovers a beautiful, tender and heroic love story that was hidden for decades. Nelly and Nadine’s story began in concentration camp Ravensbrück on Christmas Eve 1944, and continued in Venezuela after the war. Truly heart-warming.
It’s a story they both wanted to tell. The story of how opera singer Nelly Mousset-Vos, working for the resistance during World War II, was arrested and detained in concentration camp Ravensbrück. How on Christmas Eve she was singing in the barracks, and a female voice requested ‘Madame Butterfly’. How that turned out to be Nadine Hwang. And how that was the start of an unexpected but extremely strong love.
After Nelly’s death, a large box filled with her archives was sent to her granddaughter Sylvie. For years, Sylvie didn’t dare delve into it. Now she has, her conclusion is: ‘Her driving force in life was love.’ Nelly & Nadine is the third instalment of Magnus Gertten’s trilogy – after Harbour of Hope and Every Face Has a Name – based on archive footage of Ravensbrück survivors arriving in Sweden by boat in 1945. Nadine Hwang was one of them.