Beyond Words: A Portrait of Mischa Maisky

A Documentary by Benedict Mirow

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Mischa Maisky — Cellist

Pavel Gililov — Pianist

Program notes

Beyond Words is an intimate exploration of the life and performances of one of today’s greatest living cellists. The film’s centerpiece is the recording of a concert given by Mischa Maisky and Pavel Gililov during the Richard-Strauss-Tage in Garmisch-Partenkirchen featuring the music of Johannes Brahms.

Described at his début as the "Rostropovich of the future", Mischa Maisky's life have been marked by both musical accomplishments and political struggles. Noted as having been the only cellist to have studied with Rostropovich and Gregor Piatigorsky, this documentary reviews his long and celebrated career through interviews with Maisky himself, in which the artist discusses his tragic experiences in the former Soviet Union, his relationship with his instrument and the meaning of music.

In the concert featured in this film, Mischa Maisky is joined by Pavel Gililov who together perform Brahms' Songs without words and Sonata No. 1 in E Minor. Framed with the picturesque landscape of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Benedict Mirow’s documentary constitutes an intimate and emotional tribute to one of classical music’s most beloved personalities.

Photo: Mischa Maisky © Hideki Shiozawa

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