While taking a stroll in Buenos Aires on his birthday several years ago, photo collector Pablo Cruz Aguirre came across an unusual gift. Blowing down the street towards him was a collection of letters, postcards and photos depicting a performing duo named Derby and Groma.
This collection of artifacts contained a fragmented narrative of two people. Desolina Merlino, alias Derby, was born 1891 and of Italian descent. Samuel Salomón Gromatzky, alias Groma, was the son of Jewish immigrants in Argentina, born in 1895. Under the name of Derby and Groma, the two performed acrobatic dance routines in variety theaters throughout Europe and Latin America dating back to the late 1920's.
Derby & Groma attempts to answer some of the questions posed by the found material. What kind of success did this couple have, what challenges did they face and how does an entire life's record end up in the garbage? With the assistance of historians, nostalgists and collectors, the film paints a picture of Argentina's cultural life in the early 20th century, a world from which few traces still exist.
Using imagination to augment historical investigation, Derby & Groma explores the importance of preserving and revisiting the past in order to better understand the world we live in today.