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Speak the Music: Robert Mann and the Mysteries of Chamber Music
A film by Allan Miller

58 minutes, documentary, color & b/w, English, 2013
DVD packaged in a certified Green Forestry eco pack

DVD out of stock.



Robert Mann has been a vital force in the world of music for more than seventy years. As founder and first violinist of the Julliard String Quartet, and as a soloist, composer, teacher, and conductor, Mann has brought a refreshing sense of adventure and discovery to chamber music performance, master classes, and orchestral performances worldwide.

In Speak the Music, the 93-year-old Mann shares personal anecdotes from his childhood and musical training, archival performance footage, candid interviews and glimpses into his private lessons with today s most promising violinists. A living legend, Robert Mann is in turn, funny, angry, tactful, persistent, and always searching for the most human expression he finds inside the music. Speak the Music pulls no punches: Mann describes the dark side of quartet life, including often intense differences with colleagues.

Featuring rare rehearsal and dazzling performance excerpts from Mann's 50 years with the Juillliard String Quartet, Speak the Music is at once an exciting insight into the art and personality of a monumental chamber musician, and the story of the growing importance of chamber music in the second half of the 20th century.


"If you wanted the Juilliard Quartet to play a Haydn quartet, you heard something...that made the music come alive..." - Elliott Carter, Pulitzer Prize Winning Composer

"There are few authentic legends in any generation, in any endeavor. In our corner of the music world, Robert Mann is justly one of those legends." - Leon Botstein, President of Bard College

"'When I think about the Beethoven quartets, I think about Robert Mann...the drama - he was able to do it in such a successful way that it was totally contagious to the other players." - Itzhak Perlman, Violinist

"Robert Mann has been a vital force in the world of music for more than 70 years. As founder and first violinist of the Juilliard String Quartet, Mann has brought adventure and discovery to the world of string quartets. In the documentary Speak the Music, which is rich with archival footage, Mann offers personal anecdotes, reveals the dark side of the creative process, and shares his inner passion for the music he feels."
- Christian Science Monitor

"A revealing, affectionate portrait of a man who continues to be an inspiration to others well into his 90s, this is recommended." - Video Librarian

"Not since Amadeus (1984), has classical music had a rousing film to shake the old stereotypes; this might all change with
Speak the Music: Robert Mann and the Mysteries of Chamber Music."
- FilmFestivals.com

"Richly rewarding." - Film Journal International

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