Free to Rock: How Rock and Roll Helped End the Cold War

This is an Archive of a Past Event

This screening of the film Free to Rock: How Rock and Roll Helped End the Cold War will by followed by a panel discussion moderated by Ambassador Michael McFaul and including the film's director, Jim Brown, and one of its producers, Nick Binkley.

Free to Rock explores how American rock and roll music spread like a virus across the Iron Curtain in the last half of the 20th century. As rock and roll was pumped into the Soviet Union by Voice of America and Radio Free Europe, inspiring thousands of underground rock bands and their tens of millions of passionate supporters. Their enthusiasm for rock and roll became a youth movement that openly defied the Communist government. During Glasnost, President Gorbachev rolled back the controls on rock and roll, creating cracks in the totalitarian system. Cultural diplomacy played as much of a role as the trillions of dollars spent on weapons to bring an end to the totalitarian Soviet Empire and the Cold War.

  • Directed by Jim Brown 
  • Produced by Nick Binkley, Jim Brown, Doug Yeager, Stas Namin
  • Original Story by Nick Binkley, Doug Yeager, Valery Saifudinov 
  • Executive Producers: Nick Binkley, Doug Yeager, Stas Namin, John Beug, Bill Ivey