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Friday, May 05, 2006

Hilary and Jackie

Hilary and Jackie is a film from 1998 tracing the life of English cellist Jacqueline du Pre from childhood until the onset of multiple sclerosis at the age of 28, a disease which destroyed her career and her life. What fire was compacted into these 3 decades of life, true passion, the gift of music, and the reflection back to us from the inner soul. Hilary is the older sister, a promising flautist, but one resistant to the military conservatory training regime. Jackie, by contrast, has a talent that is sun-like, all apparent, bright, fixating, dazzling. She is that one-in-a-generation performer, with the winning gifts of ability and personality. Success.

For lovers of Classical Music, this is a film which presents those childhood joys of learning music and being in a close, understanding family. Those little birthday gifts of new music, nervous public performances, rapid surpassing of a string of qualified teachers, it is the development of musical life which keeps us thralled.

The Elgar and Dvorak concertos feature prominently, and one has to love the bumbling portrayal of Daniel Barenboim, esteemed man. Here's a link to the database profile, here.