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Symphony of Living (1935)

Approved | | Drama | 20 January 1935 (USA)
There is this old concertmaster of the Cosmopolitian Orchestra and he is about to realize his life-long ambition of appearing as a soloist with the orchestra, when an accident robs him of ... See full summary »


Frank R. Strayer


Charles Belden (story and adaptation) (as Charles Spencer Belden)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Evelyn Brent ... Paula Greig Rupert
Al Shean ... Adolph Greig
Charles Judels ... Rozzini
John Darrow ... Richard Greig
Albert Conti ... Mancini
Lester Lee ... Carl Rupert
Gigi Parrish Gigi Parrish ... Carmen Rozzini
Richard Tucker ... Michael Rupert
John Harron ... Herb Livingston
Ferike Boros ... Mary Schultz
Ferdinand Schumann-Heink Ferdinand Schumann-Heink ... The Doctor
Carl Stockdale ... The Judge
William Worthington ... Symphony Chairman
Leslie Goodwins Leslie Goodwins ... Oboe Player (as Les Goodwin)
Gregory Golubeff Gregory Golubeff ... Max - a Violinist (as Gregory Goluboff)


There is this old concertmaster of the Cosmopolitian Orchestra and he is about to realize his life-long ambition of appearing as a soloist with the orchestra, when an accident robs him of use of his right hand. His children, upon learning of his misfortune, immediately desert him knowing he will no longer provide them with money. So Adolph Greig sinks lower and lower and becomes a street beggar, too proud to ask for help from his friends and unable to find his son or daughter. One night, standing in front of the concert hall, he sinks to the street from hunger and fatigue. He is picked up by two men associated with the orchestra, Mancini and Rozzini, and they take him to Rozzini's and they develop a plan whereby they will set up Greig in a next-door studio where he can give violin lessons. A young violin genius named Carl Rupert shows up and, with the aid of Mancini and Rozzini, Greig starts the boy off on a brilliant career. Or, what promised to be a brilliant career until his ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Release Date:

20 January 1935 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor High Fidelity Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Richard Greig: [Adolph arrives home with his hand bandaged] Say, what happened?
Adolph Greig: I was badly hurt in an accident.
Richard Greig: Oh, yeah? Well, then maybe we could collect damages.
Adolph Greig: No. It happened in a public street, outside the stage entrance of the music hall. You see, there was a big crowd and they all wanted to get close to the great violinist, Steinmann. The people was very rough and I was pushed through a window. Richard, it hurts pretty bad.
Richard Greig: Well, it's your own fault! Why don't you come home instead of hanging round ...
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User Reviews

Al Shean as a Dramatic Actor?
22 April 2017 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

Al Shean is a symphony violinist. He injures his hand and can no longer play; his vicious children (played by John Darrow and a surprisingly uninvolved Evelyn Brent, promptly abandon him, since he can no longer provide a meal ticket. His musical friends eventually track him down and rescue him, setting him up as a teacher.

As a soap opera it is unlikely and no one in the cast seems to take that part of the story with any interest. There are a few bright spots, provided by comedy bits -- as one would expect with Shean on the cast -- and some good orchestral music. Almost all of it is by Offenbach, which is fine by me -- even if everyone seems to think that ORPHEUS EN ENFER is a symphonic piece and not an opera.

It's directed by Frank Strayer for Invincible, a Gower Gulch company that never made it. Strayer eventually made it to the relative dignity of Columbia, where he wound up directing some of the amusing BLONDIE movies.

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