The Red Violin is a 1998 Canadian drama film directed by François Girard. It spans four centuries and five countries as it tells the story of a mysterious violin and its many owners. The film was an international co-production between companies in Canada, Italy and the United Kingdom.
The film tells the story of a perfect violin known as the "Red Violin." At the film's beginning, the violin is being auctioned in Canada. As the bidding starts, the violin's history is revealed, showing that the violin has been in existence for over 300 years, having been made in 1681.
Its history is told in five stories set in different locations around the world—Cremona, Vienna, Oxford, Shanghai, and Montreal. These stories are told in chronological order except for the Cremona and Montreal stories, which are intersected into the others with each change of location and as the tarot reading and the auction develop. The 1997 auction is used as a framing device for the first four stories in the film. After the fourth story, we see the complicated resolution to the auction sequence with no further cutaways to the other four stories.
To its owners, the violin causes anger, betrayal, love, and sacrifice. In each setting the dialogue is spoken in the appropriate language. Also, a variation of the movie's signature violin solo by composer John Corigliano is played at least once in the period it is played, with the exception of Cremona, where the solo is being hummed by Anna herself. Throughout the movie, the solos are played by noted violinist Joshua Bell.
The movie starts with Charles Morritz (Jackson) arriving at Duval's auction house to witness the sale of the Red Violin. Throughout the movie, we see the various parties representing the different eras as seen in the film vying for the Red Violin. When the scene does finally shift to Montreal, we see a flashback of the events leading up to the auction.
John Corigliano (born 16 February 1938, New York City, New York) is an American composer of classical music and a teacher of music. He is a distinguished professor of music at Lehman College in the City University of New York.
talian American Corigliano was born to a musical family. His father, John Corigliano Sr., was concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic for 23 years, and his mother, Rose Buzen, is an accomplished educator and pianist. He is a former student of Otto Luening, Vittorio Giannini and Paul Creston. Corigliano attended P.S. 241 and Midwood High School in Brooklyn. He studied composition at Columbia University (BA 1959) and at the Manhattan School of Music. Before achieving success as composer, Corigliano worked as assistant to the producer on the Leonard Bernstein Young People's Concerts, and as a session producer for classical artists such as André Watts.
Most of Corigliano's work has been for symphony orchestra. He employs a wide variety of styles, sometimes even within the same work, but aims to make his work accessible to a relatively large audience. He has written symphonies, as well as works for string orchestra, and wind band. Additionally, Corigliano has written concerti for clarinet, flute, violin, oboe, and piano; film scores; various chamber and solo instrument works, and the opera, The Ghosts of Versailles, which enjoyed a success at the premiere.
If you haven't seen the movie then please do so ASAP. Its one of the 100 greatest films to see before you die. With an excellent haunting musical soundtrack.
If you miss it it'll be your loss.
And yes Love is the major theme running throughout, especially when the violin is first made & stained with the blood of the violin-maker's dead wife. He confers upon her a sort of immortality. Because? Because why? Because...why do you think?
Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, conducted by its Music Director, Misha Rachlevsky, in the Russian premiere performance of John Corigliano's "Suite from the Red Violin". With author's permission, Misha Rachlevsky amended the Suite with other episodes from the film's score, giving every violinist of the orchestra a chance to shine. The concert took place on March 20, 2003 at the Chamber Hall of the Moscow International House of Music, with Mr. Corigliano in the audience. Also performed that evening were his "Voyage for string orchestra" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdguYs0K5_g and Symphony No. 2 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xe8SNACoXpI