Highly Strung (2016) Movie Script

[string quartet: avant-garde]
[solo violin]
[man] I was recommended to the players
that were there at the time.
We went in and played and I thought,
This is really cool.
Move to Adelaide,
get away from the madness of Melbourne
and really focus on doing one thing.
[man] Kristian had been asked to join.
Then he gave me a call and convinced me,
Why not come and have a play?
A friend of mine had met him and said,
Look out for this guy.
Youll get to know him and meet him.
Hes a good bloke.
We had that introduction and then,
yeah, became friends after that.
[woman] When the previous second violinist
and cellist were moving on,
I just immediately thought, I have
to express my interest to Kristian,
so he organized for us to play together.
That was a very good experience.
[woman] I got a call from Steve King.
He offered me a trial.
I came to Adelaide for the first time
and rehearsed with the guys.
Then we did a national tour.
That served as my trial.
At the end of that tour,
Steve and Kristian told Ioana and myself
that wed got the gig.
We had the job.
Kristian and I had the privilege of really
forming our own quartet in a way.
I think its about finding the people
that have the same level of passion.
[audience murmuring]
[Kristian] Its my very great privilege
to introduce to you
the two new members
of the Australian String Quartet--
Ioana Tache and Sharon Draper.
[man] Ladies and gentlemen,
on behalf of Kristian and Ioana,
I welcome you all to this ceremony today.
[Kristian] Yeah,
we kind of took everyone by surprise.
But I think that surprise is something
that will be remembered as part--
Theres that experience that
youre talking about, of people saying,
Wow, theyve only been together,
like, for a couple of weeks,
and, you know, now they get married?
Were just lucky that we both felt
this strong musical connection
with working with each other.
But then the other side of things
also happened to be just as powerful.
And Kristian and Ioana love each other.
[man] The bride should be in the middle.
What am I supposed to do?
Ive never done this before.
How many have you put me in?
I guess its not uncommon. You have two
married couples in the Goldner Quartet.
...to share my life with me.
I dont think having a relationship
or marriage in a quartet should affect it.
[man] Normally its on the left, but being
a violinist, the ring gets in the way.
And the world will know that I am yours.
[all exclaiming]
Naturally these things can work.
It can become a match made in heaven.
Or it could fall apart.
[Sharon] I think were
the only string quartet in the world
with a set of Guadagnini instruments.
For Ulrike, this has been her passion--
to have the Australian String Quartet
playing on a set of four Guadagninis.
Theres something within me that...
is music.
I came to Australia with no capital,
no assets, no money.
I came with a vision.
My husband, Jurgen, and I
planned to create a skin care company
based on the healing properties of herbs.
Jurlique became a successful company.
Music was from the very beginning
a part of our life here.
It was hard work,
but it was very fulfilling.
And now Im on a different journey,
something which gives meaning to my life.
[Sharon] She heard the quartet
play with a guest artist
who had a beautiful instrument.
Im not sure
if it was a Guadagnini or a Stradivarius,
but it was an instrument
of that sort of quality.
[Ulrike] The sound
he could produce on that instrument
had such a magic, had such a warmth.
The nuances were so obviously different
to the nuances that musicians of the ASQ
could produce.
Suddenly I thought,
We just have to do something about that.
[woman] I was manager of ASQ at that time.
I was sort of thinking, Really?
What do you mean by good instruments?
Then it became clear that she meant
really good instruments.
From there, the journey started.
[man] When they asked us to help
with sourcing some instruments,
of course, we immediately started looking,
very aware that the project was about
acquiring very top-level examples.
So we do have an interesting Guadagnini,
as it happens.
[Ulrike] The name Guadagnini came up.
I had never heard about it.
It was a totally new name.
Guadagnini was an unusual maker
inasmuch as he worked
in a number of cities.
So he was slightly outside
of the normal mold.
[Ulrike] I had no idea about price tags.
[Morris] If you want the very best,
youre really paying a huge premium
for that final 20%.
[Ulrike] I must say
I was a little bit overwhelmed,
but I could see that there is behind that
is a much bigger vision.
Something could be done
for the culture of Australia
to have these instruments
permanently in Australia.
We set up a foundation
so that they could be held in perpetuity,
and thats actually
how Ngeringa Arts was born.
[Morris] Its unusual
to have a quartet of the same maker.
Youve got a whole group of instruments
that are, if you like,
equally sought after by the players.
Its got huge power. It has depth.
Its like a king--
a really good, very noble,
wise, understanding, but powerful king.
You can tell instantly
that this is a really special instrument.
The whole room, it seems,
just starts to buzz and vibrate
at the sound of these four instruments
playing together.
Ive never experienced
anything like that before.
[Ioana] The first day that I got it,
it was on my back--
We were just walking to the taxi,
and it kind of hit me.
I have a Guad. Its in my possession now.
[Stephen] To think that this thing--
250-plus years old--
that in all that time
nobody has come up with a better design.
Its stood the test of time
more than anything else I can think of,
apart from the wheel.
If you want the very best,
youre going to be looking at one of
those great 18th-century instruments.
[violin: tuning]
[all murmuring]
[man] At the time in Cremona,
it was a perfect storm of craftsmanship...
generations of expertise.
These violin makers
really had it down to a science.
They really understood acoustics,
I believe,
in a way that we dont even
understand today.
Thats why Cremona
becomes the fountain of violin making.
[Ulrike] When I learned
that luthiers from all over the world
would come to Cremona to have a look
at this set of Guadagninis,
I must say I was a little bit nervous.
One of the luthiers
came up to me and said,
Thank you for taking care of our heritage
and allowing now these instruments
to have a voice.
That really touched me,
because thats how I see it as well.
We are the custodians
of four incredibly rare masterpieces.
[Ulrike] They treated them
as a very fine-crafted jewel
of the past, of this master.
[Alison] We made this trip to Cremona,
and we were led by Roberto.
He opened the door into the world
of violin making as it is today.
[Roberto] Here is a violin maker.
This is another violin maker.
Another one.
You know, in Cremona today,
we have something like 150 violin makers.
[speaking Italian]
Questo il mio amico Scott.
Scott Hicks, he is making a movie.
Is this what youre working on now?
Is a copy of--
The violin of Paganini,
which is very good acoustically.
Bravo, Gaspar. Very nice.
-Grazie. Ci vediamo. Ciao.
-Ci vediamo. Ciao.
[Alison] Just to have
the four Guadagninis back in Italy,
to have them in Cremona,
was like those Guadagninis had come home.
[man] You were most likened to our
distinguished violin makers from Cremona.
Well share the beauty of this instrument
made by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini.
[Alf] I can look at a work of Guadagnini
and say, well,
What would another great violin maker do,
knowing what he knew about Cremona
and Stradivari instruments?
Learning what you could learn from Strads,
theres a precision of the workmanship
that is studiable, copiable.
This is the next chapter
of the story of violin making.
[Ulrike] So Roberto came into our lives.
We really connected straightaway.
And this idea came
to have a copy made of the cello,
which is the oldest and most mysterious
instrument of the four.
[Alison] Having a copy made
to give to a young musician,
it seemed like
a really worthwhile thing to do.
Making a copy is a very traditional way
to learn how another master
did it in the past.
[Scott] Isnt that how Guadagnini learned?
[Roberto] Exactly. Bravissimo.
The next step
is going to be choosing the wood.
[man, in Italian] Theres a long tradition
of knowing and selecting wood.
Already 200 or 300 years ago, in the time
of the great master luthiers...
this knowledge existed
among the forest rangers.
So if we want to select
a bit of wood for violins,
we should look from this part here
to this part here.
These can easily be for violins.
We mark it like this
with R for resonance.
[Roberto] R is for resonating.
[thumping on tree trunk]
[trunk reverberating]
[backup beeper beeping]
[Roberto] As we have to make a copy--
We have this flaw,
so I find pieces with the flaw
around this area.
When you work on a top like this,
youre starting from a big piece of wood.
[wood creaking]
All these noise, they are really nice.
I think an interesting violin
is one thats made freely,
where you see the hand working.
People love them. They sense that.
They feel it. They also sound better.
[Roberto] Very good.
Its certainly what I love
about Italian violin making
and what I try to do in my own work.
The culture of violin making,
the culture of...
[Roberto] Voil.
...loving the piece of work
that you nurture by hand
and bringing out the sound,
theres something really beautiful
about that.
Good. I like it.
And it harks back to a beautiful time
in European history.
[object rattling]
[Chiesa] I have a tool
for retrieving the sound post,
but-- [chuckles] this way,
its much easier, more fun.
This is the sound post.
[Alf] What is it that makes a violin?
The genius of putting a sound post
in an instrument--
that changes
the way an instruments working.
Its so sensitive and so important
for the quality of the sound.
It actually creates the possibilities
of sound that dont exist without it.
We have to check if the position is right.
[Alf] Uniquely, with a sound post,
you have a bass bar
under the left foot of the bridge
and this dowel of wood
that connects the top and the back.
Its not glued in.
Its just wedged in under the treble foot.
When the strings vibrate,
it makes the bridge vibrate.
So its a whole way
of transmitting the vibrations
from the string to the sound box.
The vibration is transferred to the back.
A tenth of a millimeter
is enough to completely change
the setting of an instrument.
In Italian, we call it the anima.
And in French,
its the soul of the instrument.
And in-- Of course, English-- sound post.
[Alison] You know,
string quartets are a really specialized,
unique form of music making
in the classical world.
It takes four very special, unique,
gifted musicians to make it work.
[Ioana] Its very important
for each member of a quartet
to be in a team that is all heading
for the same direction.
[Stephen] As a viola player,
sitting in the middle of a quartet
and being part of the harmony,
part of the motor, part of the driving,
part of the movement forwards
or backwards, all of that,
and then occasionally getting
a melody as well. [laughs]
I love that role.
[Ioana] Playing second violin in a quartet
is a complete challenge all the time.
I havent had an experience
like the one Ive had in ASQ ever.
Theres nothing that compares to it.
-[laughing] Come here, come here. Please.
-Im not interested.
Please. Its only three minutes long.
In my head, Im here for the rest
of my career. Im happy with that.
-[violin rehearsing]
-[Ioana, Sharon laughing]
The quartet is like a bottle of wine.
I dont know if youve heard this.
But the first violinist is--
definitely, I remember-- the label.
Second violin and viola
are the actual wine.
And the cello is the bottle.
Whats most important?
Is it the label?
Is it the wine? Is it the bottle?
All of those things
need to be kind of perfect.
[Alison] Its four equal voices.
String quartets are inherently complex.
I think it goes well beyond actually
the way you play the notes.
It has to do
with how you function as a group
and your ability to interact
and relate to each other
and also have a life.
[cello playing haltingly]
-[piano: hesitatingly]
[cello continues]
[piano: off-key]
[Stephen] I love--
After a day of intense rehearsing,
I go home
and theres just this chaos sometimes.
It just sets you straight,
puts things into perspective.
-Lets just listen to that again.
-Was it-- Do you think it was high or low?
So you know it, so you just adjust.
Music is for sharing. Music is for the joy
of everyone to get involved in.
[Sharon] I think, in a string quartet,
I dont believe that you all
have to be best buddies
that want to hang out every night together
after rehearsal
and gather or anything like that.
Its such an intense medium,
and rehearsals are so intense.
I think its really healthy
to have some space from each other.
Music is my life. Playing music
is what Im passionate about.
But at the same time, my life...
has other things around it
that add to my music.
Nice. Run, Max.
Its a ridiculously good job to have.
I mean, the fact that youre paid
to play chamber music
and to get to play these incredible
instruments as well, its just--
Its a dream come true.
I shave my armpits enough?
I dont think theres one role thats more
important than another in a quartet.
Every first violinist in the country
will agree with me.
Everyone else will say no, youre wrong.
The hardest part is you have
to take care of the first violinist.
If youre the second violin, viola, cello,
you have to take care of the first violin
in pieces
where the first violin is prominent.
And this can--
Where, at the F?
So the F-line needs to be higher.
Can we do it again from 14?
It needs to crescendo more, or maybe it--
[whimpers] Guys.
-[Sharon] Whyd you make a face at me?
-Like, wheres the beat?
-I dont know. Its still not--
-Oh, fuck.
Lets do it again.
Just one more time. Sorry.
[Sharon] The cellos the foundation
of the whole quartet, you know.
Youre the rock that they all sit on.
[Stephen] Viola is a go-between--
between the cello and the violins.
I like the way that it can subtly
push them in a way,
not that Im pushy.
Just do that fifth bar again.
If the bottom three parts
are not completely just like,
I am going to support you
through this hell...
you know, Mr. or Mrs. First Violinist,
then its just--
it becomes really, really difficult.
Just by the nature of it--
because the first violin
is playing the melody most often--
theyre responsible
for leading a lot of the time.
Ah! One more time.
[Ioana] And again?
I did it that time. Again.
Itll be okay.
Our job is often to try and make them look
as good as we can make them look.
And yet it can be frustrating cause,
you know,
everyone has to take care of first violin.
[laughing] Unfortunately.
[Stephen] Were always shifting roles
within the group.
Sometimes theres a trio playing
and a soloist.
Sometimes two duos happening
at the same time.
four voices yelling at each other
in total... disagreement.
[all practicing simultaneously]
[Kristian] To have four instruments
made by the same maker
played in the same quartet,
I think its a really cool vision.
[Ulrike] Its quite amazing
to see how the instruments
relate to each other
and how they resonate with each other.
Everyone is saying that, you know,
obviously, that in a string quartet,
you have to blend
and you have to, you know--
Its so good that you sound the same.
Thats the worst possible thing
that you can have in a string quartet.
You have to have four people that sound
as completely different as possible,
because thats where
the energy comes from.
Kristian, he almost goes into a space
where its totally beyond intellect.
He creates it in the moment.
And to be able to do that,
he goes really deep into the music
and into himself.
-[Scott] Hmm.
-That doesnt make it easy for himself.
[Sharon] Hes got an incredible mind
and incredible memory,
which is awesome, and Im really
quite in awe of him for that.
Sort of every time I hear him,
its like a homecoming.
Not without challenges,
because he challenges as well.
His facial expression,
the way he holds the instrument.
He has this tendency to have
the instrument and then go off with it,
almost like the instrument and Kristian
go somewhere else--
take off.
[audience murmuring]
[Roberto] When you start to do
the arching of the back--
It is hardwood,
so we have to go down, mmm,
till five or six millimeter.
-[out of breath]
-[Scott] Tough work, yeah?
Yes, it is.
You still have a piece of wood here.
[siren blaring]
[woman] Good-bye, Stefan.
I brought them up by myself, right?
And I made them--
I mean, they are entrepreneurs,
musicians, whatever you want.
I never had a whip in my hand.
I guided them.
And thats it. Im not a stage mother.
This part is gonna be called
Keeping Up with the Carpenters.
[Lauren] Someone wanted to do
a reality show about us.
We want to make it
Mozart meets the Gossip Girl.
We trade in Stradivaris made in the 1600s.
If we had all the money in the world, wed
buy the greatest collection of violins.
This whole notion of obsession--
We were all probably four, five years old
when we started.
You guys look like Men in Black right now.
-Oh, I know. Sorry about that.
[David] Sean and I
didnt really think this through.
Scott, Im sorry we didnt bring
our Strads to play in the park.
We could have made some extra money.
You know,
its expensive to live at the Plaza.
[man] Everybody say, uh--
-[Lauren] Stradivari!
-[David] Stradivari!
[camera shutter clicking]
[woman] Bravo, bravo!
[Lauren] Being New Yorkers,
you have to be resilient.
You have to have thick skin.
-[David] Any kind of goal we had--
-[Lauren] Was always done as a team.
[Lauren] Thats one thing
that we learned at Princeton.
If youre going to do something,
no matter what,
be disruptive, shake things up.
Bring something to the table
that people before you havent done.
[Sean] Lauren in particular
brings a lot to the table,
and thats why we poached her from Google.
Shes probably the most organized
and disciplined person on the planet.
[Lauren] Were also trying to be
the bridge between Stradivaris world
and the 21st century.
So were doing everything in our power
to make the Stradivari brand mainstream,
to make it sexy.
He already has an incredible brand appeal.
Were just here to proselytize further.
Were spreading the gospel of Stradivari.
The type of flame that inspired us
to recently trademark
a brand of Stradivari wood
will be called Stradivari Legno,
where we outfit luxury items
with a Stradivari flame
by using the same wood
from the forest that Stradivari would use.
-[David] Were constantly-- Every day--
-[Lauren] Is a new day, yeah.
Were doing 20 or 30 different things.
We have the music side of things.
We have, you know, the business aspect.
We work with institutions,
banks, hedge funds.
[Lauren] Roy is our angel.
Basically, we call him our angel investor.
He believed in our company.
He believed in us.
He believed in our market.
He did independent due diligence
on the investment side of the instruments.
Actually speaking about that world,
we have Roy over here too.
Hey, Roy.
-Hows it going?
-How are you, Roy?
And this was not staged.
So this was, like, all natural.
[Lauren] We do business with people
that we enjoy being around.
[David] First off, congratulations
for being the top hedge fund,
year-to-date, in the world.
Thats a big accomplishment.
Your vision was an inspiration to us,
and I was happy
to be your first client here.
[Scott] What have you brought with you?
[David] So these are-- These are both
from the Niederhoffer collection.
So this is the Strad from 1694.
For the last 300 years,
Strads have never, ever
-gone down one penny.
-Theyve never lost their value.
My entire life is spent
with very, very intangible objects--
prices of commodities
and exchange rates and individual stocks.
Theres nothing that I do in the world
I invest in that I can actually touch.
For literally hundreds of years,
there have been people playing it,
playing the same music
that I like to play.
It really is easy to forget
that youre playing something
that is a work of art
and a piece of history
and that it dates back to a time when
Mozart was just a glint in someones eye.
And yet here it is today making
beautiful music and, you know,
maybe someone played Mozart
for the first time on this instrument.
Its both beautiful as a work of art...
and meaningful as an object of history
as well as quite interesting
as an investment.
[Sean] People are saying, okay, this
is a great way to protect your wealth,
so youre getting these hedge fund
managers in a bank and people in Europe--
[David] But these hedge fund managers
also play the instrument, like Roy.
They also loan instruments out
to musicians.
Its a win-win for everyone.
These instruments are being controlled
by people who arent musicians.
Thats what I worry about
for the future of these instruments
and for the people
that deserve to be playing them.
Stradivarius did not make them
for musicians.
He made them for the Medici families.
He made them for the top families,
the royal families
who then loaned it to deserving artists.
Its not the other way around.
[ending together]
-Nice. Thank you.
-[David] Bravo.
-[Lauren] Yeah.
-[Roy] Thank you.
[Morris] The instruments
being looked after by a collector
is a very positive thing.
It means
that instruments will be preserved
and passed on to the next generation.
If every instrument had been used
every day since it was made,
we wouldnt have some of these really
finely preserved examples
that we can enjoy now.
When instruments go into a glass case
and they cant be accessed
and held and enjoyed
with that direct human contact,
they do die behind glass.
An instrument
will spin off into an institution,
and it wont reemerge
and will never see the light of day.
Its a delicate thing because--
You do want some of--
You want them to be preserved.
Theres a lot of wear and tear
on an instrument
when youre taking and playing it
and traveling with it.
But, you know, in the late 1700s,
Im sure it was rattling around in the
back of a horse-drawn cart or something.
[Morris] There are some
that have to be very well preserved.
And if everybody
picks them up all the time,
future generations wont be able
to enjoy them in the same ways.
Museums always want the instrument
as an art object
just to be kept for the future.
Violin players always want
to have the instrument as tools.
[solo violin: Bach]
[Morris] Its often quite a long process
for a musician to find an instrument
that really suits them.
Theres also a learning process
involved for the artist very often,
particularly if theyve grown up playing
the same instrument for a very long time.
[Bach continues]
[Balanas] You need to quickly adjust,
because, as violinists,
we sometimes have to perform
on many various instruments,
different instruments.
[Morris] You try something else,
and, however good it is,
it wont have some of the comfort
of what youre used to.
You have to listen to the instrument
more than telling it what to do.
You know what I mean?
[Ioana] Its not so easy to just kind of,
have your way
and, you know, expect that it will
do everything you tell it to do
exactly the way you tell it.
-[Balanas] Yeah.
-Basically, we lowered the top nut here.
-Yeah, I could feel that.
-And we lowered the bridge a little bit.
And you changed the E string,
which I broke.
Yes, thats right.
Its such a delicate balance
to get the violin sounding at its optimum.
[Chiesa] Changing the bridge
or the strings or whatever,
then they change it completely.
And at that point, they were
the perfect tool for that musician.
Picking up this instrument,
its like a person.
Its really getting to know
the sound and color.
The more you play, the more you discover.
Every day, I dont know exactly
how the violin is going to respond to me
until I take it out that morning.
And some days, I have incredible days
and I think I can do anything.
Its like when you get to know someone.
You start talking to them,
you find out and you meet again.
And every day you spend so much time.
Its like a relationship.
This Pressenda that I used to play,
it was like living with a nagging mother
or something.
Or an unbelievably naggy wife
or something. I dont know.
[Beare] I think a lot of wives have
lost out where the violins have--
Somebody said,
Just wish my wife would stop telling me
that if only I could look after her
like I look after my violin.
My greatest concerts,
the times when I felt I was-- that--
really on,
so much of it has to do with how
the instrument and I were getting along.
[Morris] That relationship
you have with the instrument
will also give you things
that you just didnt know were there.
[Bell] Music is all about nuance.
Its like if you were a painter,
you were suddenly given a million colors
to work with instead of three or four.
[Kristian] The process of discovering
new sounds is never a sudden thing.
Its something that takes a lot of time.
[Sharon] I keep on discovering new things
that I can do on this cello,
new sounds that I can create.
You never really feel
that youve reached its limit.
[Stephen] The subtleties I didnt have
on a modern instrument are all in here.
I just had to find out
how to tap into them.
[Kristian] To feel comfortable playing it,
let alone actually getting to a point
where youve-- hes found all the sounds,
maybe it took me eight or nine months.
And then, you know,
the real journey starts--
you know,
this thing which just lasts a lifetime.
[both laughing]
[man] Once I spoke with Yehudi Menuhin,
the great violin player,
and, just by mistake,
I said your violin.
He said, No, no, no. Its not my violin.
Im his player.
Im trying to be a good player
for the instruments.
You know, very often I got these comments
when at the concert.
Oh, Ulrike,
its so fantastic what you do.
And How lucky are we
to have these instruments.
The instrument without the musician
who brings it to life--
its a dead piece of wood.
Actually, when you pick it up and play it,
all the reasons why people spend
a lot of money on these instruments
becomes completely clear.
[woman] So what about
trying to design an experiment
where we actually
investigate its superiority.
Are these old violins
really superior to new violins?
Because, in terms of science,
nobody has been able to prove it.
So we thought
to design a blindfold test
where players
would play new and old instruments
and see what they like, what they prefer.
Can they tell if the violin is old or new?
[Lauren] A modern instrument,
like, it sounds fantastic.
-Theyre usually very-- Some of them are--
Very bright, very powerful,
very immediate.
So you will find a modern violin
that you can just tear into.
Itll keep giving sound,
like a Lamborghini.
The more you press,
the more itll go faster.
On a straight road,
that may be the best thing you want.
On a road where you need
real expert handling,
that may not be the right one for you.
[Lauren] These are things that have
existed for hundreds of years.
Theres-- Theres a complexity.
Theres an added dimension
which takes sometimes months,
sometimes years to peel away.
[Scott] Bravo.
What the great instruments give you,
the most important thing for me,
that inspires you somehow.
So playing this instrument,
you find inside yourself
something more than what you would have
done with some other instrument.
If youd asked Isaac Stern his approach--
He said, I want the best violin
for keeping me calm
and accompanying me
in the heat of battle.
[Fritz] So with the blindfold test,
new were favored
compared to the old ones.
And the ratio is about three to two.
Its not far from 50-50,
which is what we would have expected.
Many makers came to see me saying,
Ah, you cant imagine.
It has liberated me.
I just feel so relieved.
Now I can do my own violins
and not have to copy Stradivarius.
This is what we need
to truly understand whats going on.
The myth part is so profound in this
that you will hear
what you think you hear.
The new instruments that are
coming out on top or coming out equal
are probably made with the same love.
So why shouldnt they sound the same way?
[Roberto] And when you warm up the wood,
it does perfume.
[sniffs] And its really nice.
[Scott] Beautiful. Yeah. Hoo.
-Im exhausted watching.
-[both laughing]
[man] Its been so wonderful
to get to know the Carpenters.
And theyre incredible people,
incredible musicians
and have great vision
and enthusiasm for what they do.
-Wow. What a view.
-Its all right.
-Put this right here.
If youre in the arts--
any area of the arts--
when you meet with that kind of energy,
its just tremendously exciting,
because you think about collaboration.
And so were having just the beginnings
of a conversation about that,
and well see where it goes.
One of the points you had made to me
about these instruments
is that they are in a way
the first speakers.
Yes, the first stereo system.
[Sean] This one sounds great.
[Lauren] Weve been talking
with Harman Kardon and JBL
to create a Stradivari Legno version
of their top-end speakers
for their 70th anniversary in which they--
You know, youre combining both
the excellence in engineering design--
sound design-- from JBL,
as well as the aesthetic excellence
of a Stradivari violin.
We operate in a world of $200,000 bows,
$5 million, $10 million violins.
-$4 million diamonds.
-$45 million violas.
$45 million violas.
These are numbers
that are quite staggering.
We did the most expensive concert
in history.
-We had--
-Most valuable instruments in one stage.
[Lauren] We had eight Stradivaris.
[playing tango]
[Scott] What was the value?
-Probably was about $120 million.
-Over $120 million of instruments.
[Morris] Compared to, say, the 1960s,
if you had a really decent job
in an orchestra,
you could actually buy
an 18th-century Italian violin.
Forget it now.
With one lottery win, you could buy
a Strad. Now you have to win twice.
I worry about the value
of these instruments. I really do.
And I would love it if the violins
stayed reasonable enough
for musicians to buy them outright
without sponsors,
but that just simply hasnt happened.
So I feel a bit gloomy
about the poor old musicians.
I feel very gloomy at times.
You know, Ive pretty much mortgaged my
life away to buy an instrument like this.
Its my most proud achievement,
but its also
the most important thing Ive done.
[Kristian] I mean, look, they sound great.
Do not get me wrong.
These instruments sound fantastic,
and they are the best instruments
in the world.
But why do they cost 100 times as much
as something that sounds half as good?
[Adamson] If you look at
any well-designed and well-made object,
theres going to be a balance
between functionality and aesthetics.
And the two things intermingle
and support one another,
and I feel thats something about
the humanity of a well-made thing.
[Roberto] One thing that I like
of every step of the making
is that actually you put your body on it.
Its like putting all yourself
inside this instrument.
[Adamson] Its almost impossible
to imagine a great maker
not considering both the usefulness
and the beauty of what theyre doing,
because theyre pouring themselves
into it.
You know, like a great violin maker
will be putting into an instrument
not only their own
lifelong accumulated knowledge
but also the knowledge that has been
accumulated in previous generations.
There are energies that exist
that we dont have a name for,
and some of them
work in the artistic world.
And its that-- the care we have
for something we have--
that somehow projects
into the work that we do.
And if an instruments not made
with that same kind of care and devotion,
it doesnt come out as well.
Youre working with your hands.
Theres a constant sense that youre--
Like a massage therapist projects
their energy past their hands
into the body doing healing work.
But its a sense
of your intention and your will
going into the instrument
youre working on--
the love I would say.
You can see when Im going
in the wrong direction,
the wood is not happy.
[Scott] Oh.
And it tells me also by the sound,
so you have to turn in the other way.
And the sound is much better
and the wood is much happy.
[Alf] Love is a funny word.
Im not sure it was just that.
It was maybe care or something
that is in the Italian instruments
that make them so endearing.
Why do players just want to hold them and,
you know--
I think they vibrate with that too.
They appreciate it. They sense it.
And Guadagninis instruments
are full of it.
Its a person being who they are,
the humanness of a person
coming out in their work, in their eye,
being communicated
just through their tools.
[low-frequency humming]
[Scott] So what does that tell us?
Its for testing frequency
that responds to the right vibration.
We have three different tests.
They all make different shape on the top.
When you have all these
three frequencies matching perfectly
with the thickness you want,
you have a very good starting
with your top plate.
In the past, we know they did it by hand,
and they did a very great job.
Their knowledge of this,
of the rules of nature--
the grains of the wood
that we have to follow...
the rules of acoustics and structural
strength that we have to follow--
but also the beauty
of how to do a nice corner,
a nice F-hole, a nice scroll,
and all of it happening at the same time.
And the beauty
of some of the great instruments
is that you see that they were made
freely and with enthusiasm.
[Morris] I always find that
the real magic of it is this voice
that is just created by human hands.
But when you hear a really great player
who can speak with their hands,
thats something really magical.
I feel like with Strads and del Gess,
you have this element of godliness.
Like the Strads are these, kind of,
shining, fiery angels, you know,
and the del Gess are these really dark,
kind of, darker gods.
I dont know, I suppose.
I think Guadagninis are kind of
more human somehow. Theyre--
Humble is the wrong word,
because theyre still very powerful.
But theres just an element
of reality to them
as opposed to something supernatural.
[Adamson] The amount of just human energy
thats being put into one of those objects
is truly breathtaking,
and I think that that is
what we mean by aesthetics really.
Theres a lot of debate about
what beauty in art is or beauty in design,
but for me its absolutely the way
that human beings take their experience
and they somehow resolve it in an object
in a way thats satisfying to us.
And even if you dont know
anything about violin design,
you can somehow feel that
off a great instrument.
I think that is the magic of a great
work of art or great work of design.
Okay, perfect.
[Stephen] In Europe,
they ride with instruments all the time.
I know
that this is a very valuable instrument.
And then I think,
Is it worth more than me?
Surely with this tied to my back,
were in this together. [chuckles]
[Sharon] I think
Ive become a more interesting musician
because of playing this instrument.
Im certainly
feeling more confident as a player
and Im enjoying playing more
because of it as well.
Hopefully the audiences pick up that, too,
because performing in music is meant
to be about enjoying it and living it.
[Stephen] Its the unexpected
that could happen, the car door.
You walk around a corner
and theres a banana skin on the ground.
You cant see everything coming.
[Ulrike] Kristian and Ioana said they
didnt want to continue to play into 2015
with Stephen and Sharon.
And if they couldnt form
their own formation,
they would leave at the end of 2014.
[Scott] It must have come as a shock when
first and second violin go to the board
and say they want to find
other people to play with.
-Thatd be a surprise, yeah.
-Well, it must have been.
And how did you respond to that?
Well, I mean,
if your partner comes to you and says,
I want to sleep with somebody else,
naturally you think,
Well, okay, this isnt working.
[Scott] As I understand it, it wasnt that
you and Ioana said you wanted to quit.
You said you wanted other people
to play with you
and continue to be
the Australian String Quartet.
Yeah, I mean, look--
So what was that process like for you?
It-- Its... really, really tough.
It was an abyss between them.
It was almost impossible
for the whole board to decide.
Yeah, its harder than you might think
to get four people completely
on the same page musically,
really wanting the same things
and the same results in the long term.
[Scott] Look, the catchall that people
always said, Oh, musical differences.
But, I mean, what does that mean?
-And if you cant--
Scott, I dont know if I can help you
on this line of questioning.
Youre one of the few people who can.
Possibly, but its not something that--
Quartets are very private things.
I mean, I do feel responsible for that.
I was very pushy
towards the rest of the quartet
to try something very different.
-[Kristian] You heard us play Ligeti.
-[Scott] Mmm, and Schnittke.
Hes completely blowing
the string quartet up.
Its just exploding.
We played Louis Andreissen, played Crumb,
an electric string quartet
called Black Angels.
People wrote letters saying,
This is extraordinary.
What an incredible thing.
People never write letters--
audience members, you know-- to us.
There were maybe two or three bad ones.
If you ever present
that kind of shit again, Im out of here.
And the board,
a lot of them were not happy.
We were told, Maybe you shouldnt
be playing... this music
here... at this time.
We played with raw gut strings.
Its a very different sound
to this metal crap we use today.
Discussion in the audience.
Some loved it,
this more mellow sound produced.
Some didnt like it. I was part
of those people who didnt like it.
It gives you the sound welds,
particularly with Beethoven.
But I am so grateful for that experience.
You really get the feeling of Beethoven,
cause Beethovens always expressing
this kind of feeling of, like,
trying to-- trying to say something
incredibly beautiful.
And yet youre saying it
as this really, like, this fallible--
this like really, really, kind of
tragically fallible human creature.
[scoffs] Look, Im-- This is--
Were just talking about gut strings.
But that was one of the things that was,
kind of like very clearly from the board.
They saw it as a risk and they saw it
as something which maybe would not--
would not make money.
No, no. That was not at all.
A quartet, its really important
that it has that daring,
that courage to find new grounds.
At the end, the question was:
Two parties, with which party do you go?
And I had an immense sense
of loss and sadness
when I became aware
it was almost impossible
to go with Kristian and Ioana.
We, kind of, found out
that, uh-- that Steve and Sharon
would take the quartet into the future
and that Kristian and I would,
you know, just begin our new chapter.
Its a business.
And we were not comfortable
that they would find,
would select players,
and then in a years time,
it would be the same situation.
It sucks and it would have sucked, like,
whatever way the decision went like.
I dont know.
[Kristian] We played the instruments
while they were making the decision,
which took, you know, over a month...
which was weird.
Suddenly my doorbell rang
and in front of me were Kristian
and Ioana with the instruments.
Ulrike, here are the instruments.
That pulled me
right into that emotional moment.
So I was really shocked that they would
be wanting to give them back
when they still had to play
with the quartet for three months.
I was really shocked.
It really made me question,
What have we done?
We just spent the last five years working
our guts out to make this possible,
and it was being handed back
and what are we going to do with them?
And I have to say, I was confronting
to actually have to put
those instruments into the safe...
to put them in a bank vault.
Musicians dont get an opportunity
to play this type of instrument
very often in their careers.
Shall we see if the other ones okay?
The fact
that theyre beautiful works of art,
but they dont mean anything
if no ones playing them.
[Scott] Yeah.
Your decision to return the Guadagninis.
Why was that necessary?
I mean, obviously theres something
heartbreaking about, you know,
being with the instrument and knowing
that its not going to be yours.
I cant understand sometimes.
I-- I know that they loved
playing the instruments.
So why choose not to when you could?
I dont know.
There will be a reason
that will sound very reasonable,
and Im sure that that will be in the next
frame of this documentary. [laughing]
We felt like the instruments
were fighting us.
It starts to be, How can it fight you?
Its a piece of wood.
There were times I wanted
to scream at Kristian, absolutely.
I wanted to shake him to say,
Look, just wake up.
Thats the thing, its not you stop
connecting to the instrument,
but it somehow feels like
it stops connecting with you,
like it is cutting off as well.
I mean, obviously it all comes
from the person, rationally.
But the board really didnt understand,
and they were furious.
You cant talk him around. Theres no way.
[Scott] Did they think
you were just being spiteful?
Absolutely, yes.
I mean, and fair enough. Thats
a really logical conclusion to come to.
Id not had such a strong
emotional attachment to an instrument
until Id started playing this Guadagnini.
And just knowing I had to give it back
at the end of the year was--
It was just simply too sad
just to keep playing it.
Id want to try and play that for as long
as possible before I had to give it back.
Maybe those guys thought
it was too painful or something
to continue playing them.
It was like ripping a Band-Aid off.
And the Guadagninis now live at the bank.
[laughing] Its, like, in the morgue.
Thats how I feel, you know.
I might be still in the process
of mourning, because its dead.
[slow-tempo, minor key]
-Do you reckon we should move the chairs?
Rehearsals were becoming
more and more frustrating.
-I guess--
-What are you saying?
Im wondering whether we should get them
out of the back row with their iPhones.
All four of us
would try to discuss something,
whether it be
how to shape a musical phrase
or a particular collective sound
that we wanted.
We knew that they wouldnt agree
and vice versa.
It wasnt a pleasant time.
It was very stressful.
It was a different-sounding quartet
without half a quartet of Guadagninis
all of a sudden.
Its not like this thing shoots
fireworks out of the scroll.
[Sharon] It was a shame,
because it really was a special sound,
having the four instruments match.
Im very happy
playing my little English Datsun.
To think that Brahms was only 31
when he wrote this piece as well.
Im nearly that age,
and its a scary thought.
But just the scope of this piece,
you have to feel this live and--
...recording doesnt do justice to
and which a documentary
doesnt do justice to or anything.
Its real chamber music. Its something
that should be experienced from--
almost from if you are sitting
right here or here or next to Anna.
If you want to come closer--
[Stephen] Its about the music still.
We all think its about the music.
Amongst all that hardship and tension,
you know, those little moments
of amazing music making in performances.
[classical march]
[continues, quietly]
Its a string quartet. Were all meant
to be incredibly finely tuned players.
You need to have respect
for your colleagues.
Not one person in the quartet
should be thinking,
Im the soloist in this group
or Im the director.
It spells death for chamber music.
Its meant to be four equal people.
[Kristian] The first violinist always has
this stereotypical characterization
of being the diva,
so Im very wary of just adding
more fuel to the fire for that subject.
Is that going to make it
into the documentary? [laughing]
[sneakers squeak]
Theres something really magic
about that piece.
Its like an abyss. It feels never ending.
And even that ending of the piece--
It doesnt even finish. [vocalizing]
-Its still going when it finishes.
You know, like, its just--
[sighs] It-- Yeah.
Amazing piece. [laughs]
You cant talk about it
and do it any justice.
-You were listening hard, were you?
-I had to go to toilet.
-You had to go to the toilet during it?
-Yeah, and I did a poo.
-Highlight of the concert. I did a poo.
It would be much better if we do it again.
[Scott] The shame of it is that now
theres so clearly two factions.
Its apparent to me
and its apparent to all of us.
I mean, its a struggle.
Its difficult definitely
if youre divorced and youre told you
have to keep sleeping with your partner,
even though youve signed the papers
and its all happening.
[Scott, reading] Thursday,
the 16th of October, 2014, 1:01 a.m.
Dear Scott,
I hope you enjoyed filming the Brahms.
I just wanted to send you an e-mail
regarding the four of us as people.
For quite some months,
the four of us have lost
an element of comfort with each other
when it comes
to informal social situations
outside of the rehearsal studio
and performance venues.
Due to all of our musical
and artistic differences,
weve also lost
the natural friendships we had
in the beginning of our time together.
I suppose the social and musical
are one in the end.
What Im getting at,
you mustve picked up on it already
from this afternoon at the gallery,
is that the four of us dont
get together outside of work hours
to have coffee
and chat about everyday things...
which is why the atmosphere today
felt fairly unnatural,
for you too, Im sure.
And the conversation was limited.
Sorry we wasted yours
and everyone elses time.
I thought that might be helpful
for you to know for the future,
even though Im sure
its blatantly obvious after today.
Thanks again and see you tomorrow, Ioana.
[cello and viola duet]
[duet continues]
[Scott] Here we are,
the Australian String Quartet.
Otherwise known
as the Australian String Duo.
But what actually happened yesterday?
Because obviously
things changed since Friday.
-We saw the quartet playing together.
-Indeed they did.
-Now what happened yesterday?
-A good concert too.
[Stephen] It was a pretty good concert.
Both of us got a call
from both Kristian and Ioana,
and they both told us
that they could no longer commit
to their word and play with us,
even though we have a concert on Friday.
And that was Sunday. A concert Friday,
concert Saturday, concert Sunday,
a workshop Monday, yeah.
[Scott] Ive actually had further news.
Kristian and Ioana have told the ASQ
that they have played with them
for the last time...
and they are not going to fulfill
the rest of their contract, uh--
The Melbourne Festival is being canceled.
Yeah, thats very tough.
[Sharon] Were still in shock.
It hasnt really sunk in.
Yesterday morning, Kristian called.
Theyd made the decision
to leave the quartet, effective as of now.
My God, are they insane?
Its unforgivable to walk away.
And leaving two behind
in such dramatic circumstances...
you are casting a shadow
over the whole group.
We have to do whats right for us,
you know, Ioana and I as musicians.
I was not happy with how I was playing.
Im ashamed to say it, but I just started
losing the ability to concentrate.
Also the fact
that all of this is happening
and theres a whole crew
of film people here shooting all of it.
It was quite a shock to find out
that theyve been that unhappy,
so unhappy that they couldnt go on.
It all sounds like excuses and whatever.
I dont care. Thats fine.
Cause its true.
[woman on PA, indistinct]
Lets do some of your clothes, okay?
[Sharon] Kristian and Ioana
have very different views and priorities
towards why were here in the first place.
And Steve and I have very,
very different reasons too.
But I did not think that it was something
that would result in, you know,
the quartet breaking up.
-[man on PA] Flight 694 to Melbourne.
-[Stephen] Its about personalities.
You can weigh up things, you know.
Look at the way people have behaved
over their lives and think,
Well, you know, it doesnt matter.
Ill risk it anyway because
theyre fantastic at what they do.
Or theyre super talented
or whatever it is.
It has less to do with personality
and how well you get along with people
as it does just having people
that share the same...
or the same kind of level of passion
and commitment.
[children] Hip, hip, hooray!
Hip, hip, hooray!
Hip, hip, hooray!
[Stephen] Ive got family
and Ive got a string quartet,
and I divide my time
between the two of them.
Were getting paid to do this.
Why arent we doing it to the 100%,
like, utmost, you know, like--
This is our job.
I know that Ioana and I
are totally unreasonable in that regard.
We just want to be doing it all the time.
[two violins practicing]
[violins continue]
[David] These are probably
the worlds most expensive shoes.
I think theyre $128,000.
I feel like Galasso
went down in price recently.
Were doing a partnership with Amex Black.
So were thinking we should make
a $100,000 discount on a Stradivarius.
-Credit towards the purchase of a Strad.
-I like it. Im gonna get it.
That glamorous world
of the classical music world,
were always trying to bring that back.
-This is more for David.
-Im watching my brothers buy everything.
[Scott] This isnt sibling rivalry, is it?
-Only for suits.
-What do you think, Scott?
-[man] Only 6,500.
-[Lauren] That is very sharp.
Were Laurel and Hardy here.
[Lauren] Within the context
of an industry, it is a business
and we are entertainers.
-Look, its moving.
-There you go.
-Like a snake.
-[Lauren] Its still alive.
-A bit scary. The python one right?
-What do you think, Scott?
-Its good for when you go down under.
Exactly, to go to Australia.
-Hundred-thousand-dollar jacket.
-A hundred thousand?
-You sold two of them.
-No way. Is that mink?
I think weve killed enough animals
for this jacket.
Theyre $128,000. I think hes gonna
give me a discount on it though.
Wow. I need to show this to Scott.
These are all diamonds,
little diamonds over here.
I dont know if its too much
for my style, a little too blingy.
Can you imagine if youre walking
in New York City
and one of these diamonds falls out?
-Ma, you realize Scott is taping this.
-[Lauren] Her professional hobby. Exactly.
We hold
the most expensive violins in the world.
These are
the most expensive shoes in the world.
-Cheers, Sean. Cheers.
-There we go.
-No, I dont want to.
-What do we do with our lives?
Its made in Italy.
Some of the greatest things in life
come from Italy.
[bells tolling]
[tuning string]
-Roberto, ciao.
-Sharon, how are you?
-So come in.
-Its gorgeous. This is it?
-Yes, Im really pleased to meet you now.
I know. Its so nice to finally meet you
and to meet this.
The difficult part at the beginning
was to choose the wood,
because this one--
Because its actually in the wood itself.
So how do you--
-Yeah, but you did it.
I chose three different pieces of wood,
and two of them disappeared
during the work. [laughing]
Here we go. This is the big moment.
-Nice smooth pegs.
You are the first one
to play the bows on it.
-Well, I did it, but doesnt matter.
[playing slow, sustained notes]
-Its so open already.
We still have to put the varnish on it.
You can imagine what it means to work
around an instrument for four months
and the feeling now to have this cello
being played by you
and to realize that it does sound nicely.
-It does.
-And it can be only better.
-Its great. Thanks.
[both chuckling]
Boom. Thank you. [chuckling]
-Its got that initial energy--
-...and liveness, which is what you need.
-Energy. Brava.
-Thats the right word.
-Sounds beautiful.
-You should be happy.
-Yes, I am.
[Ulrike] Its just such a wonderful,
wonderful resonating moment
to hear that cello almost being born
by being played for the first time.
Its a beautiful, beautiful instrument,
and it will be in Australia
for young musicians to play and to enjoy.
[Ulrike] Players come and go,
but this set of instruments
will attract excellence
and will be played by fine musicians,
I just know it.
[Alison] It really became apparent
what it actually means to copy.
Roberto put so much effort
into making it an exact copy.
Its so special.
[Alison] The commitment, the time,
the passion, the energy.
They carve an instrument out of
a block of wood. It is a thick plank.
And its hard work. Its physical work.
And I hadnt had an appreciation of that
until we visited Cremona.
-I only can say congratulations.
-Thank you.
-And thank you. Yeah, its great.
-Thank you. Thanks.
[bells tolling]
[Ulrike] I see myself like a person
who brings dreams and visions
into reality.
The project of the Guadagninis
is just the physical manifestation
of a dream.
What I really stand for
is a person who dares to dream a life
and not be afraid of having a big vision,
a big dream.
-[man] Bravo! Bravo!
[Ulrike] This longing for music,
it was a very, very strong force in me
from the very beginning.
[man] Bravo!
I had a teacher who was full of music,
so every morning we started with singing.
I actually started
to get deeper into music.
I so much wanted to play violin.
I was wanting a beautiful instrument.
Im brought up Lutheran,
and then you have confirmation.
And I so much wanted a violin.
I didnt get one.
I got a gold diamond ring, and I thought--
Anyway, my father really resisted
because he was kind of afraid
that I would drift into this world
of art and music.
This dream of beautiful instruments,
somehow it went underground.
Maybe its actually this dream
which came to the surface
when this vision of acquiring
the Guadagninis came up.
Suddenly I connected
to that little girl again
who so much wanted a beautiful instrument.
And sort of
theres something within me that...
is music.
-[no audible dialogue]
[Ulrike] When I was a teenager,
if somebody wanted to be friends with me,
they had to play an instrument.
Gustav and I, we were really soul mates.
Can you point to yourselves in there?
Thats the funny one.
[in German]
And me, top row, far left, grinning.
[Ulrike] We loved nature together.
We loved music together.
Already then I wanted to have a quartet.
We didnt have a cello,
so Gustav didnt have a choice.
But he learned to play cello.
Actually, he made a cello
which is a beautiful instrument.
We couldnt imagine
a life without each other.
[man, indistinct]
[Ulrike] My father was a complicated man.
He just didnt want Gustav
to be my boyfriend.
[in German] You introduced me
to what I didnt have at home.
Painting, for example.
These things werent allowed.
[Ulrike] Gustav copied Klee Blau.
And the painting,
the year when we did matric.
And then when it was finished--
[in German]
And you put it up in your room.
-Of course.
-Your father wasnt happy about us.
-And didnt appreciate modern art.
One afternoon, at 2:00 p.m.,
my sister was home alone
and the doorbell rang.
Outside stood a man with a crimson face
with a large painting in his hand, saying,
Here! I dont want this!
I wont have this in our house!
My sister took it off him, flabbergasted.
So the painting stayed with me
and wasnt with Ulrike anymore.
For a long time,
I just resisted the threats of my father.
I was the youngest of three kids.
And before I was born,
he did write a letter to his unborn child.
He didnt know--
Then I turned out just a daughter.
He saw my life even before I was born.
In that letter, he did write out
my whole life, how it would be.
And he had a very clear image.
I was a possession,
part of his life forward.
So I left Gustav.
Why? Not for another man.
I just couldnt bear the tension anymore.
So I just went away. [scoffs]
It was almost like
I left part of myself behind.
Because I couldnt--
I wasnt allowed to live that life.
Today, I actually, within myself,
Im at peace with my father.
[exhales] Yeah.
-[Scott] Thank you.
You can see in quite of these photos
how hard it was for me.
[Scott] And involved.
Im not the one,
the person I was when we were 18, 19.
Im a different person, yeah.
[in German] But in a sense,
you havent changed at all, have you?
Maybe its just the side of you
that only I perceived--
...that you werent able to live out
that often back in those days.
[in German] And the strange thing
is that Im living it out now.
It had always been there,
but I wasnt able to live it out.
Its fine.
[Ulrike] It has been really beautiful
to reconnect and enjoy life together,
because what carried us
when we were young,
life has its own current.
You know, there is something there
and you think you cant let it go,
and it goes underground.
Thats this love we had
when we were young.
And then 50 years later,
it comes up and is rekindled.
After I had left Jurlique,
the next step was this vision--
to build a cultural center,
to bring together this connection
of nature and culture and music.
That dream has manifested.
The concert hall is built.
Its an amazing, beautiful building.
Just the space, the spaciousness.
Its like an invitation.
[chattering in German]
[Ulrike] Its far more sophisticated
than I ever imagined it.
Its like an instrument.
It has its beauty.
And, you know, imagine the Guadagninis,
these old instruments, sounding in here.
And this is a new instrument,
but it fits so well together.
Its beautiful.
-Gustav, its the color of your shirt.
How did you know that? [laughing]
And its just the beginning. [chuckles]
We call this the leaf ceremony.
Ill ask each of you to take a leaf.
And we go around and put them all back.
This country in the Adelaide Hills
has been really special to us.
And the way I want to give back
is to enrich cultural life.
And out of that came this vision...
to collect these four
very fine Italian instruments.
And as an honoring of the land
which has given life to all of us,
I wanted to express that
by giving the name Ngeringa--
which is the farm just down there--
to the cello.
Its great.
Thats what the country has asked of you.
If you get something from the country,
give something back.
[speaking aboriginal language]
[in English] Now we all become one.
[speaking aboriginal language]
[Ulrike] By allowing us
to use the name Ngeringa,
I had the sense
that something became complete.
Its just the grace of life
to be able to close circles in life.
[playing harmonics]
[droning fundamental note]
[rhythmic pulse]
[grows quieter]
[continues quietly]
[continues quietly]
Thank you.
-[chattering, laughter]
-[man] I cant stop the compulsion.
This is just so wonderful. Roberto! Ciao!
All the way from Italy to Australia.
Its been a long trip, but we made it.
Yeah, its just an absolute joy
to have played it for a year as well.
-[Scott] Im just about done really. I--
-Oh, really?
-I wonder--
-Im just getting started.
-Oh, good. Okay, well keep going.
Uh, do you--
I mean, does it cause you any qualms?
Or do you, in that 3:00 a.m.,
wake up where you think,
Oh, shit, you know, like,
have I overplayed my hand?
Oh, God, no.
No, no, no.
I wouldnt have done it any other way.
[Guitar: classical]
[Scott] Nice one.