Humour, sarcasm, grotesqueness – and not least an overriding pessimism – are characteristics not only found in Dmitri Shostakovich himself but also in his music.
The film intends to be as authentic as possible in portraying the composer, neither denouncing him as an opportunist nor praising him as a dissident. The seven chapters rather try to reconstruct how the young star composer, who renouncing the traditional was known for his grotesque distortions, became the stiff state composer most of whose life is still shrouded in mystery.
Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
London Symphony Orchestra, Charles Groves (conductor), Bruno Rigutto, Vasso Devetzi (piano)