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Small Wonders (1995)

 -  Documentary | Biography | Music  -  1995 (USA)
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A dedicated music teacher in East Harlem instructs a gaggle of underprivileged children in the art of the violin. In the climax, they play Carnegie Hall with some of the world's foremost ... See full summary »


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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Roberta Guaspari ...
Arnold Steinhardt ...
Isaac Stern ...
Deborah Meyer ...
Herself - teacher
Sid Massey ...
Himself - River East Elementary School director
Kyle Haver ...
Himself - Central Park East director
Barry Solowey ...
Himself - Central Park East music teacher
Lucy Matos ...
Herself - Central Park East director
Alexei Tzavaras ...
Nick Tzavaras ...
Mark O'Connor ...
John Blake Jr. ...
Himself - Fiddlefest
Karen Briggs ...
Ani Kavafian ...
Herself - Fiddlefest


A dedicated music teacher in East Harlem instructs a gaggle of underprivileged children in the art of the violin. In the climax, they play Carnegie Hall with some of the world's foremost fiddlers. Written by Mike D'Angelo <>

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When funding for the arts was cut, these kids and one great teacher decided to pull their own strings.




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1995 (USA)  »

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Fiddlefest  »

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Remade as Music of the Heart (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

Preferred this to the movie Music From the Heart
29 September 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw the documentary some years ago and absolutely loved it. I therefore looked forward to seeing the film, and while enjoyable, it just did not have the impact of the documentary. Small wonders seemed immediate and real life. Music From the Heart by contrast followed the predictable path of sentimentality with a couple of unnecessary romances thrown in as an afterthought, like sugar in a coffee. You know that one or two children are going to have problems at home and need to leave the program. You know that they lose the original venue after tickets have been sold, until SHAZAM someone comes to the rescue with Carnegie Hall. Small Wonders kept the sentimental goo out of the mix and showed it like it was, and Roberta Guaspari was a demanding tyrant, jus1 like the teachers who got the best out of me when I was at school.

I would like to see a 'where are they mow?' follow up of the children.

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