Touch the Sound
Summer 2006 Summer Arts series
Friday, July 21, 2006 at 8:00pm
Rated G ·
A captivating, award-winning documentary by Thomas Riedelsheimer (Rivers and Tides) that screened at the 2004 Toronto International Film Festival, Touch the Sound explores the fundamental connections between sound, rhythm, time and the body, and suggests that our sense of hearing can lead us toward a more attentive and meditative experience of the world.
Acclaimed Scottish percussionist Evelyn Glennie is the conduit for this free-flowing, contemplative journey with the goal of sensitizing viewers to sound. Nearly deaf as a result of a neurological disorder, Glennie believes her entire body can hear. She performs in cities from New York to Kyoto with an array of classical, found and experimental instruments, from which she is able to coax a startling variety of sounds. She entrances onlookers in Grand Central Station with her beloved snare drum, while in Japan she taps out a rhythm on detritus she finds in a café. Performance footage is blended with breathtaking impressionistic images of the world around us, imploring viewers to be more attuned to their surroundings.
Just as the film’s groundbreaking sound design focuses attention on the musical quality of every noise—including silence—Riedelsheimer’s remarkably rich cinematography invites viewers to re-experience everything from busy streetscapes to the trembling grains of sand on a beach. A constantly moving camera transforms the banal into the sublime and sweeps us into the film’s transcendent vision through both intimate close-ups and epic landscapes. This stylistic grace beautifully expresses the themes of openness, interconnectedness and resonance that so intrigue Glennie and the other musicians featured in the film.
Touch the Sound is a mesmerizing experience that demands to be seen on the big screen.