Author Topic: Good classical music documentaries?  (Read 9993 times)

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AberyClark

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Good classical music documentaries?
« on: November 21, 2012, 09:44:20 AM »
I'm not looking for biography movies like Amadeus, etc. More biography/discovery channel/ken Burns type docs. Interviews with experts, showing historical scores, letters, paintings, etc. What would you suggest? I'm mainly looking at classical period to present. Right now I have not developed a strong taste for Baroque or earlier.

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2012, 09:46:09 AM »
BTW, Amadeus was not a biography; it was a wonderful stage fiction by Peter Shaffer.  Still astonishes me, how many people mistake it for a documentary . . . .
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
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Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2012, 09:48:58 AM »
In other news, welcome! : )  I did my undergrad work at Wooster, so I have a number of old mates who live in Columbus.
 
And incidentally, I played Salieri in a College of Wooster student production of Amadeus.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline Opus106

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2012, 10:04:07 AM »
The BBC series Great Composers. Well made set of documentaries of the kind you're looking for. There's also a nice one hosted by Stephen Fry on Wagner. The man's a huge fan: just look at him react like an excited child to someone playing a piano reduction of a scene from T&I (on Rick's piano to boot). I recently posted my views on a three-part dramatised documentary on Beethoven here. Those are off the top of my head right now.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2012, 10:05:46 AM by Opus106 »
Regards,
Navneeth

Offline North Star

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2012, 10:27:21 AM »
On 20th century music, check out Simon Rattle's Leaving home, all the parts are in Youtube, and there's a thread of it somewhere. A very nice document of Rattle discussing and performing the music of the more influential composers of the 20th century, and the late 19th century (focusing more on the first half, but not entirely) in thematic episodes.

And then there are these:
In search of Beethoven
In search of Mozart
In search of Haydn
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Offline bigshot

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2012, 10:44:17 AM »
Art of Conducting is wonderful. There's an excellent doc on Rubinstein by his son.

Offline San Antone

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2012, 10:52:16 AM »
Igor Stravinsky: The Final Chorale/Five Orchestral Pieces (2005)



The series Juxtapositions directed by Frank Scheiffer is very good overall. There are several different DVDs each one focusing on one or two 20th century composers.  The one pictured above is somewhat misleading in that along with a wonderful explanation of the Stravinsky work, "Symphonies for Wind Instruments" the last half of the film is devoted to Schoenberg's 5 Pieces for Orchestra, Op. 16.


The Unanswered Question - Six Talks at Harvard by Leonard Bernstein (1976)



A nice stocking stuffer.

 :)

AberyClark

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2012, 01:33:30 PM »
BTW, Amadeus was not a biography; it was a wonderful stage fiction by Peter Shaffer.  Still astonishes me, how many people mistake it for a documentary . . . .

I never saw it...so I assumed it was some kind of autobiographical peace.

Offline Brewski

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2012, 01:39:49 PM »
Among those mentioned - all good suggestions - I can heartily second the Bernstein Harvard talks. Also, these may not be quite what you're looking for, but Michael Tilson Thomas's Keeping Score series is superb; he studies a particular work in depth, and then conducts the San Francisco Symphony in a performance.

http://www.keepingscore.org/

I've seen three or four in the series; this one on The Rite of Spring is excellent.



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« Last Edit: November 21, 2012, 01:41:42 PM by Brewski »
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Offline Lisztianwagner

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2012, 02:55:00 PM »
The Harvest of Sorrow by Tony Palmer. It's a wonderful documentary about Sergei Rachmaninov.
"Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents." - Ludwig van Beethoven

Offline TheGSMoeller

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Re: Good classical music documentaries?
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2012, 03:14:11 PM »


Herzog and Gesualdo. Nuff said.