Documentary

The Final Chorale

About the "Symphonies for Wind Instruments", musical oddity

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The story of a musical oddity, Symphonies for Wind Instruments by Stravinsky.

Wearing sunglasses and a bow tie, with all the panache of a dandy in spite of his age, Igor Stravinsky (1888-1971) is strolling on the deck of a passenger liner at the arm of a woman in a fur coat… This glamorous image should be kept in mind when listening to Symphony for Wind Instruments composed in memory of Claude Debussy in 1920 and revised in 1947.

This masterpiece that seems to come from nowhere and of which the conductor Reinbert de Leew reveals the mysteries to us, note by note, measure by measure, also appears as an amusing trick Stravinsky enjoyed playing on the musicians and the audience. Giving us a feel for the derisive beauty of the piece is not the only merit of this film directed by Frank Scheffer.

Robert Craft, a close friend of Stravinsky's during these years, sheds indispensable light on this symphony which was at the origin of their meeting in 1947, whereas Reinbert de Leeuw, in conclusion, gives us an interpretation of the complete work.

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