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11/30 From Director Josh Aronson:
Orchestra of Exiles has continued to lead us to fascinating people and places, and the re-creation scenes and interviews we have been shooting to finish the film are stimulating, to say the very least.
My latest (and last) overseas trip for the production took me first to Berlin for our fund raiser and the gala for the 10th anniversary of the Berlin Jewish Museum where the film will have it’s Berlin premiere in 2012.
From there I traveled to Warsaw and Huberman’s birth place, Czestochowa, to film street scenes that look the same today as they did in Huberman’s time. Also we filmed the 19th century Jewish cemetery in Czestochowa. Semi-destroyed by the Nazis and now eerily overgrown by the forest – it is a powerful and painful experience.
Finally on to Israel where I shot 3 days of re-creations in Tel Aviv with the support of my producing partner, United Channel Movies.
The scenes staged there were the largest in the movie – inside the old Jaffa Train station we built a set to look like the Levant Hall Exhibition space where the first concerts of the Palestine Symphony actually took place in 1936.
The actor who played Huberman in the scenes we shot in Germany came for his scenes and we cast the indomitable Israeli actor Alex Ansky to play Toscanini. We recruited 20 musicians to be members of the orchestra playing the Brahms 2d Symphony – of course the music was to playback from Zubin Mehta’s recording with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. Great thanks again to the generosity of the IPO for donating their music to our film.
Back in NY we are cutting all this material into our film and we hope to have a rough cut of the movie in the next few weeks. Soon we begin the months of work required to polish the graphic elements of the film – letters, maps, newspaper headlines and archival photos – all of which need the attention of our Graphic Elements Designer to integrate them seamlessly into Orchestra of Exiles.
We have a final day of filming in NY planned for next week to get a number of scenes: we will shoot a talented young musician to play violist Dora Loeb. Huberman brought Dora to play in the orchestra in 36’ but, unhappy in Palestine and homesick, against Huberman’s advice, she went home to Germany. A few years later she was deported by the Nazis to Riga, where she was murdered.
Also on this day we film an extensive interview with Itzhak Perlman, which will be woven throughout the film alongside the other musician’s interviews with Pinchas Zukerman, Zubin Mehta and Joshua Bell.
What lies ahead in the next few months are the steps to finish the movie: casting and recording the 30 actors for voice overs, licensing all the archival materials, sound and graphic video work and the many other elements it will take to finalize the movie. We hope to have it ready for release to festivals the world over by April 2012.
As always, I conclude with a request for new or re-newed financial support or suggestions of people or foundations that will find our project as worthwhile and timely as we do. We still have a large financial gap to complete the film and, of course, to maximize the usefulness of Orchestra of Exiles, we need to raise funds to create educational study guides and a web site useful for research and reference.
Our Fiscal Sponsor is the Interfaith Committee of Remembrance and all donations for the production are 100% deductible.
Thank you for your on going enthusiasm and support