Composers on Camera: The Music Lovers

By early 1970, director Ken Russell had everything going for him. His third commercial feature film, “Women In Love,” was nominated for 6 Oscars, including a nod to him as Best Director, and scored Glenda Jackson her first Oscar for Best Actress. Meanwhile, “Song of Summer,” his biopic of the last years of composer Frederick …

Composers on Camera: Song of Summer

Recently I reviewed Ken Russell’s Elgar and The Debussy Film, which represent his first directorial efforts for BBC arts programming slots Monitor and Omnibus. Russell’s interests weren’t exclusive to composer biography. He followed up these early films with noteworthy retellings of the lives of artists in other disciplines, such as modern dance pioneer Isadora Duncan …

Composers on Camera: Ken Russell’s “Elgar” and “The Debussy Film”

Hello, and welcome to my notebook! This review and those that follow are essentially a detailed set of notes to myself for the upcoming 5-part Radio New Zealand series: Composers on Camera. For 250 delicious minutes, I plan to discuss and dissect the narratives of films about composers – from golden-age cinema like “Song of …