Listening through the lens

Christopher Nupen
Foreword by Vladimir Ashkenazy

Multi-award winning film-maker, Christopher Nupen has made more than 80 films on classical music including the highly-acclaimed The Trout. Working with musicians of international acclaim, this is his story and comes with a 13-minute DVD showcasing some of his finest films.






BAFTA-AWARD winning documentary-maker, Christopher Nupen has made more than 80 films on classical music and musicians. Here, he tells the story of his varied and often astonishing life and invites us to share his view of `Listening through the Lens’. The book comes with a 13 minute DVD showcasing a selection of his finest films. His pioneering portrait-films count among their subjects Daniel Barenboim, Jacqueline du Pre, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman, Nathan Milstein, Andres Segovia, Yevgeny Kissin, Karim Said, and Daniil Trifonov, many of whom have become lifelong friends. His 1969 film The Trout is legend. His film We Want the Light has won some of the most prized awards in documentary making, including the Jewish Cultural Award for Film and Television, 2003/2004.



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About the Author

Christopher Nupen began his broadcasting career in the Features department of BBC Radio when he wrote and presented High Festival in Siena in 1962 for the BBC Third Programme: a radio documentary of an unusual kind about the extraordinary summer music school of the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, where Nupen studied with Andres Segovia and Alirio Diaz. Nupen left the BBC and with David Findlay (lighting cameraman) and Peter Heelas (film editor) formed Allegro Films, the first entirely independent television production partnership in the United Kingdom. Since 1968, they have made over 80 televisions productions on subjects as diverse as Respighi, Mussorgsky, Brahms, Sibelius, Schubert, Paganini, Schoenberg, Piazzolla, Tchaikovsky and including The Trout, one of the most frequently broadcast films on classical music.


Foreword by Vladimir Ashkenazy
1. Angels
2. Sparkling Eyes and Ruby Lips
3. Beniamino Gigli and Tito Gobbi
4. Sadler’s Wells Theatre Ballet
5. Lotte Lehmann – Parts 1 & 2
6. Eiulf Peter Nupen
7. The Charing Cross Road
8. BBC Radio – Parts 1, 2 & 3
9. Accademia Chigiana – Siena
10. Evesham
11. Diana Baikie – Part 1
12. Andres Segovia – Part 1
13. BBC Television
14. Double Concerto
15. Isaac Stern
16. Daniel Barenboim
17. Andres Segovia – Part 2
18. Jacqueline du Pre
19. Diana Baikie – Part 2
20. Vladimir Ashkenazy
21. The Trout
22. Pinchas Zukerman
23. Itzhak Perlman
24. Origins
25. Michael Nupen
26. Hayat – Nieves de Madariaga
27. Huw Wheldon
28. Nathan Mironovich Milstein
29. Manfred Grater, Sten Andersson, Gidon Kremer, Niccolo Paganini, Jose Montes Baquer
30. Gigi – Alice Sommer
31. Len Selby
32. Evgeny Igorevich Kissin
33. Karim Said
34. Danil Trifonov
35. Caroline and Matthew Percival
36. Why?

DVD Contents:
1968 Vladimir Ashkenazy: The Vital Juices are Russian (34″”)
1969 The Trout (Barenboim, Perlman, Zukerman, du Pre, Mehta) (23″”)
1966 Double Concerto (Ashkenazy, Barenboim, English Chamber Orchestra) (12″”)
1982 Jacqueline du Pre and the Elgar Cello Concerto (19″”)
1967 Segovia at Los Olivos (15″”)
1970 The Ghost (Barenboim, Zukerman, du Pre) (35″”)
1975 Pinchas Zukerman: Here to make Music (22″”)
1978 Itzhak Perlman: Virtuoso Violinist (I Know I Played Every Note) (12″”)
1979 Elegies for the Deaths of Three Spanish Poets (Cristobal Halffter) (44″”)
1995 Remembering Jacqueline du Pre (35″”)
1977 Andres Segovia: The Song of the Guitar (1’01″”)


Christopher is a man of great professional expertise, great passion and wonderful humour. This book reflects these qualities in a most captivating way.
Vladimir Ashkenazy

Nupen turns out to be as captivating a writer as he is a film-maker. The openness and honesty that mark out his professional work can be sensed throughout this extraordinarily candid memoir.
Julian Haylock – The Strad

Nupen’s deep affinity for classical music and his genuine friendship and love for the subjects of his films burns ever bright throughout this extraordinary book….
Andrew Eales –