30. October 2008 · Comments Off · Categories: Links, Movies, Other People's Words

It didnt take long before I’d realised that this is no ordinary concert broadcast. The film basically provides a deconstruction of individual members of the Berliner Philharmoniker, through a series of interviews, peeling away the layers of confidence and exuberance which they portray through their concerts. Slowly, the film reveals some of the inner fears, tension, internal contradictions, and sometimes ghosts of the forgotten past. A horn player relating how she was “Ms Unpopularity” in school, a second violin speaks of “the struggles of not being able to pick up the subtlies of playing in an orchestra which had developed a rich culture”, of being ashamed of his asian heritage and not being about to assimilate into everybody else. The principal oboist shared how he used to stutter as a teenager, and how his instrument became his medium to becoming mainstream. Similar sentiments echoed through several more members from the various sections of the orchestra. Rattle speaks of the Jekyll and Hyde within his musicians. The concertmaster speaks of the sound of orchestra back in Karajan’s days still ringing in his ears and his continual quest in search of that sound again. The level of sheer frankness and directness, at times an overload of information, is just overwhelming and leaves much food for thought.

Hmmm. Did every musician get into this to make up for some weakness?

The quote above is regarding a movie, Trip To Asia: The Quest for Harmony, about the Berlin Phil and Simon Rattle. Any readers seen it?

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