Crossing Borders – Daniel Barenboim on Music – A three part Documentary

This three-part documentary accompanies Daniel Barenboim on his quest into the social meaning of music and the secrets of sound. It features him as a UN Messenger of Peace leading a spectacular concert in Gaza, working with the West-Eastern-Divan-Orchestra and conducting the Cairo Symphony Orchestra for the very first time. In addition, the programme opens up a fascinating cultural discourse by depicting Barenboim discussing Wagner, politics and music. Also featured discussing these subjects are figures, who have shaped contemporary history, among others Pierre Boulez, Joschka Fischer and Richard von Weizsäcker.

Part One: Music and Politics

In a discussion with Daniel Barenboim Edward Said once said: “It has become quite rare to project one’s self outward, to have a broader perspective”. Daniel Barenboim, constantly trying to find out what music can achieve and how it can inspire mankind, is certainly able to do just that. This documentary gives an insight into the social meaning of music. It is featuring the UN Messenger of Peace Daniel Barenboim leading a spectacular concert in Gaza in May 2011, working with the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra and discussing about music and politics.


Part Two: Musical Approaches

Like almost no other musician of our time the conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim conveys music in its various facets – enthusiastically and with unique precision. How does Barenboim bring an orchestral score to life? How is he able to create a musical sound that touches the audience and orchestra musicians equally? Barenboim demonstrates how music can be interpreted richly and subtly. The viewers get an intimate insight into Barenboim’s musical approaches towards the secrets of music and its sound.


Part Three: Music and Taboo – Wagner in Israel

The third part focuses on Richard Wagner in reference to his taboo in Israel. Daniel Barenboim addresses the question whether music as an art form can be judged from a purely musical perspective or if it can’t be separated from the views and beliefs of its creator.


Year of production:2012
Duration:Part One 53:00 - Part Two 23:00 - Part Three 26:00
Recording Date:September/October 2012
Co-Production Company:ZDF
Associated Production Company:Arte
Distribution TV:C Major Entertainment GmbH
Director:Paul Smaczny