It is surprising that this first ever documentary on American composer Samuel Barber (1910-1981) comes some 36 years after his passing. This two time Pulitzer Prize winner whose now ubiquitous Adagio for strings was first championed by Arturo Toscanini was much lauded and performed during his lifetime. His two grand operas (Vanessa and Antony and Cleopatra) were performed at the Metropolitan Opera and his increasingly popular Violin Concerto was first recorded by Isaac Stern with Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic.
Barber’s music is a personal favorite of this writer. This mid-century neo-romantic master is gaining greater recognition through an increasing number of performances and recordings so this release would seem to be a timely one.
Filmmaker H. Paul Moon will be screening an discussing the film ahead of its March 23rd release on disc. The screening will be at the Jarvis Conservatory at 1711 Main Street in Napa, CA at 7 PM on Friday, February 10. It will be preceded by a performance of the justly famed Adagio for Strings in its original form for string quartet.
The trailer is available for viewing at the website noted above and the site contains further info about rental and purchase.