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September 1 , 2011

Sounds and Silence in NYC

The documentary “Sounds and Silence: Travels with Manfred Eicher” has its first New York showing on September 12th, at the IFC Center, 323 Sixth Avenue at West Third Street, at 6:30 p.m. Manfred Eicher will be in attendance, and participate in a question and answer session after the screening.

Over a period of five years, Swiss filmmakers Norbert Wiedmer and Peter Guyer followed producer Eicher and a number of ECM around the world. In footage from Estonia, Tunisia, Germany, France, Denmark, Greece, Argentina and elsewhere, their documentary movie “Sounds and Silence” captures aspects of the music-making process at ECM, and provides glimpses of unique players and composers at work. Amongst the artists included: Arvo Pärt, Eleni Karaindrou, Dino Saluzzi and Anja Lechner, Anouar Brahem, Gianluigi Trovesi and Gianni Coscia, Marilyn Mazur, Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin, Kim Kashkashian, Jan Garbarek and others.

The film, which received its world premiere at Locarno’s Piazza Grande in front of an audience of 7,000 spectators in August 2009 has since gone on to tour the world’s festivals, including the Melbourne International Film Festival, Vienna’s Viennale, San Francisco’s SFJazz series, Estonia’s Pimedate Ööde Filmifestival, the Hofer Filmtage and more. “Sounds and Silence” won the Berner Film Prize 2009, was nominated for the Schweizer Film Prize.

Now ECM issues a DVD / Blu-ray edition of the film as well as a CD soundtrack album , “Music for the Film Sounds and Silence”. Early reviews of both are positive. In London’s Time Out, Geoff Andrew writes of the DVD, “Anyone interested in the consistently rewarding music available on the ECM label is sure to enjoy this Swiss doc on music producer Manfred Eicher. Along with a lovely, lively selection of ECM musicians and composers, he’s shown recording albums in an assortment of locations … Directors Peter Guyer and Norbert Wiedmer provide elegant, richly evocative images and a subtly arranged impressionist narrative that deals revealingly with the practicalities, the philosophies and the many wondrous joys of music-making.”