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They Came to Play (2008)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 107 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 7 critic

Chronicles the Fifth International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs, hosted by The Van Cliburn Foundation. Players from all over the world, ranging from self-taught to ... See full summary »

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Henri Robert Delbeau ...
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Mark Fuller ...
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Clark Griffith ...
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Ken Iisaka ...
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Slava Levin ...
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Drew Mays ...
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Suzanna Perez ...
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Richard Rodzinski ...
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Esfir Ross ...
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Storyline

Chronicles the Fifth International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs, hosted by The Van Cliburn Foundation. Players from all over the world, ranging from self-taught to classically-trained, aged thirty-five to almost eighty, convene in Fort Worth, Texas for a week of intense competition, music and camaraderie. The film the film provides an intimate look into the lives of these colorful, multi-faceted competitors as they strive to balance the demands of work and family with their love of music. Years of dedicated preparation culminate in critical performances before a professional jury and discerning audience during three nerve-wracking elimination rounds. Written by Anonymous

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Documentary | Music

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25 October 2008 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

Riveting, touching - and tremendously funny
24 February 2009 | by (Brooklyn, NY) – See all my reviews

I saw this film in New York together with a large audience that was roaring with laughter. The characters are impeccably selected, every shot is delightfully planned and composed, and the editing is intelligent and fast-paced. The filmmakers show tremendous compassion and admiration for their subjects, while keeping the film light, quirky, and funny. Combine that with a deep understanding not only of classical music, but also of the vagaries of human destiny, and you've got a pretty difficult balancing act.The fact that, after laughing with the characters for almost two hours, the New York audience rose to its feet to give a hero's welcome to the finalists of the competition, who were in attendance, is a testament to the filmmakers' ability to pull this balancing act flawlessly.


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