From 1999 to 2001, filmmaker Paul Smaczny followed legendary pianist and conductor Daniel Barenboim, exploring his exceptional life and brilliant career.
Daniel Barenboim, director of Staatskapelle Berlin, is a legendary pianist, conductor, and music director. This man of many passions has played an essential role in some of the most important debates of our time. Paul Smaczny followed Barenboim on a tour that took him to Berlin, Chicago, Weimar, and Buenos Aires (where he made his debut 50 years before), and concluded in Jérusalem (where he dared to present a program featuring Wagner, breaking an implicit taboo of the Jewish state's musical world). Over the course of the journey, Barenboim unveiled his story, from his birth in 1942 in Buenos Aires to his arrival in Europe from Israel at the age of 10.
Cecilia Bartoli, Pierre Boulez, Zubin Mehta, and Waltraud Meier, his colleagues, pay tribute to this exceptional musician. This documentary includes one particularly moving scene: the young Barenboim playing in a swimming pool with his wife, the cellist Jacqueline Dupré, who passed away at a young age. The film includes historic photos from the concert in Israel where the conductor offered the audience an encore performance of a work by Wagner.