The Most Beautiful Song
A Search for Singers with Thomas Quasthoff
Director: Tilo Krause
Distributor: C Major Entertainment
Length: 60 min. documentary & 50 min. gala concert
16:9 shot in HDTV 1080 | stereo & 5.1 surround sound
© 2009, a BFMI production for Unitel in coproduction with rbb and Classica in cooperation with Das Lied - International Song Competition
Once upon a time there was a king who took great de­light in the melody of a little bird out­side his win­dow. Then, as winter came, the bird dis­ap­peared and the king grew mel­an­choly. Three brave men set out to find one that could sing "the most beau­ti­ful song". Did they suc­ceed? What be­gins as an en­chant­ing fairy tale turns in­to ex­cit­ing real­ity in this doc­u­ment­ary on the first edi­tion of bari­tone Thomas Quas­thoff’s new in­ter­na­tion­al song com­pet­i­tion for young sing­ers, "Das Lied". With the fairy tale gently ar­tic­u­lat­ing the course of the com­pet­i­tion, the film sweeps the view­er away on a thrill­ing "search for sing­ers".
Thomas Quas­thoff foun­ded this con­test to en­sure that the Lied, which the bari­tone calls "the most beau­ti­ful form of mu­sic mak­ing", con­tin­ues to hold its place in the con­cert rep­er­toire of the fu­ture. The film ac­compa-nies some of the young sing­ers dur­ing the com­pet­i­tion’s three rounds, provid­ing a show­case not only for beau­ti­ful voices and poignant Lieder, but also, and above all, for emo­tions. The hopes and dis­ap­point­ments, the joys and doubts, the ten­sion and ex­hil­ar­a­tion of the young sing­ers are all cap­tured on film. And it soon emerges that the con­test is as stim­u­lat­ing and gal­van­iz­ing for the jur­ors as it is for the con­test­ants! Ex­cerpts from the clos­ing gala con­cert re­cor­ded at the sump­tu­ous Apollo Hall of the Staat­sop­er Unter den Linden Ber­lin round off the film.
A pro­gram of high­lights from the gala con­cert is also avail­able sep­ar­ately. In ad­di­tion to Thomas Quas­thoff, one of the top bari­tones and Lied sing­ers of our day, the jury in­cludes such dis­tin­guished vo­cal­ists as Bri­gitte Fass­baender and An­nette Dasch, as well as the famed ac­com­pan­ists Helmut Deutsch and Charles Spen­cer. Among the prizewin­ners who per­form at the gala con­cert are Ger­man bari­tone To­bi­as Berndt and Aus­tri­an bari­tone Daniel Schmutzhard. Ac­cord­ing to Quas­thoff, the goal of this pro­ject is to find the suc­cessors to the greatest sing­ers of today and to dis­cov­er new voices. It is, in es­sence, very much like the mel­an­choly king’s search for his little bird and its un­for­get­table melody...