Michael Nyman In Progress

Director Silvia Beck
Germany / 80 min. / 2010 / English


This is Nymanesque: the composer that’s become a genre. We dig around in the roots of his galloping sound (and also his family, travelling to Poland); we submerge ourselves in his best soundtracks and commiserate with members of his bruised orchestra.

 

We emphasize in progress. Because this is Nymanesque, a composer-turned-genre and the route he took to get there. Michael Nyman opens the gates to his private realm to help us understand the path to Nymanland. And thus we investigate the roots of his galloping sound, and his family, travelling to Poland, the cradle of that style that’s so inimitably his, that few others can emulate (let alone play): his early digestion of Don Giovanni is the ticket to “Eye for Optical Theory” (from The Draughtsman's Contract, his first hit). How was it born, this strange music that as he himself admits, “never looks good on paper”? From there to The Piano (which, can you believe, he composed without seeing the film), we immerse ourselves in his best soundtracks, and of course, commiserate with the members of his bruised orchestra. Because being a member of The Michael Nyman Band hurts, and that’s no word of a lie: trombonists with bleeding lips and violinists with shredded fingers, while Nyman affirms, robustly: “I don’t decorate films with music: the music has to survive on its own terms.” And it does, it does.

Details
Subtitles
VOSE

Premiere type
National Premiere


Showing format
HD

Participation
in festivals
Warsaw International Film Festival, Ghent Film Festival, Taipei Golden Horse Film Festival, Sheffield Documentary Film Festival, ZagrebDox

Leadings
Michael Nyman, Steve Reich, Volker Schlöndorff

Screenwriter(s)
Silvia Beck

Editor(s)
Bernd Euscher

Camera
Michael Boomers

Sound designer
Claudia Wronski

Music Composer
Michael Nyman

Producer
Torsten Boennhoff, Erwin Stürzer

Film company
Monada Arts

Film distributor
Aktis Film International Gmbh

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