Born in Tehran in 1984, harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani was an advisor and contributor to the film. Mahan studied musicology and history at Stanford University, and was mentored there by George Houle, Peter Watchorn in Boston and later Zuzana Růžičková in Prague. Mahan was a BBC New Generation Artist from 2008-2010, a Borletti-Buitoni Trust prizewinner, and in 2014 he was on the shortlist both for the Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist of the Year and Gramophone Artist of the Year – all firsts for the harpsichord. In 2015 he was honoured with the BBC Music Magazine ‘Newcomer of the Year’ award and was nominated in three categories for the Gramophone Awards – Best Baroque Instrumental, Best Instrumental, and again Artist of the Year. Mahan performs often at Wigmore Hall and continues his academic activities as professor of harpsichord at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.
Followed by a Q&A with Mahan Esfahani.
Attending this event
Films screening at this event
- Harriet Getzels
- Czech Republic, USA
- 83 min
“A film that tells the story of 20th-century Czech history and conveys a sense of the harpsichord as a living instrument […] enough to make anyone put down a book, and listen.” The Washington Post
90-year-old Zuzana Ruzickova survived three concentration camps, including Auschwitz, and decades-long oppression and harassment under the totalitarian regime in her native Czech Republic to become a world-famous harpsichordist and the only musician to ever record all the keyboard works of Bach. Here she speaks candidly about her miraculous survival, the struggle to get back to normal life after liberation, her resistance to communism and, most importantly, her endless, unconditional love for life – and music.
Winner – Best Documentary – Los Angeles Jewish Film Festival 2017
Winner – Best Documentary – Washington Jewish Film Festival
Followed by a Q&A (18th November only) with co-directors Harriet and Peter Getzels, chaired by Alexander Bodin Saphir.
- Daniella Rabbani
- 9 min
30-year old Dana meets her grandmother Ethel, a Holocaust survivor, for the first time in 20 years. But will Ethel finally open up and speak about her past?