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The Cliburn - Playing on the Edge (2001)

Olga Kern , Stanislav Iudenitch , Peter Rosen  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Olga Kern, Stanislav Iudenitch, Van Cliburn
  • Directors: Peter Rosen
  • Format: Classical, Color, Import, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Peter Rosen Productions, Inc.
  • DVD Release Date: November 22, 2005
  • Run Time: 160 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005T5Y9
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #296,767 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

There is an excitement in live competition that is seldom heard in any other kind of performance. Every nerve is on fire; every competitor is giving the performance of his or her life. This documentary by Emmy(R) Award-winning director/producer Peter Rosen takes the viewer backstage at the world's most prestigious piano competition, revealing up close the personal lives of a few of the most extraordinary young pianists. "Real life" is set against a backdrop of intense recitals, piano quintets, and concerti with an orchestra led by renowned conductor James Conlon.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb achievement April 22, 2002
This video not only takes you behind the scenes at the Cliburn, it does much more. It shows you personal glimpses of several of semi-finalists and the finalists, what their experience is like not only in Fort Worth but leading up to it. You hear them talk about their preparation, their fears, their confidence.
This is a fascinating study, into a world rarely seen, the world behind what it's like to be a world-class piano competitor, where the least player among the 32 competitors could take the stage tomorrow with a symphony orchestra and play a well-executed concerto.
The viewer's anxiety starts to rise with that of the on-screen subjects, as the viewer picks his own favorite, and thus the viewer is transported briefly into that world of play-and-wait. As I followed my favorite, Olga Kern, I fell in love with her musical passion, which followed in stride with her technical mastery. As the camera captured the passion in her face when she played Rachmaninoff in the finals competition---a Russian playing a Russian---I was moved to tears and have been every time I see it.
The producers did an incredible job with this video and it is well worth seeing for any lover of music and of passionate expression.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite DVDs February 10, 2002
This is a two-sided DVD, with interviews and performance excerpts of the 11th Van Cliburn finalists as they proceed to the finish on side one. The artists were brilliant; it seems impossible to pick the "best". The judges made an unprecedented decision to choose two Gold Medalists, Olga Kern from Russia, and Stanislav Ioudenitch from Uzbekistan.
Side two contains complete performances of the first Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto, and the third Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto, by the two Gold Medalists. Side two alone is worth the price.
Strangely, the disc does not offer chapter selections.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
By P
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Praise for Olga Korn February 6, 2003
By A Customer
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I searched out this DVD after seeing the last portion of it on a PBS broadcast. I love it BECAUSE of the facial expressions and body contortions which Olga Korn contributes to her performance-- for me it enhances and does not subtract from the enjoyment of the music.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding piano competition May 6, 2007
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I am a pianist (non professional) and feel well qualified to comment on this DVD. I have followed the Cliburn for years and find this tape absoutely excellent. One has a chance to get to "know" the lead competitors, the life of a competitor both away from the competition and during it, the feelings of tension and excitement, and excellent coverage of the music, which is itself most rewarding. I have seen other Cliburn tapes, and this one is superior. The best yet. The viewer is drawn into the procedings and develops feelings for the various performers. I would recommend "The Cliburn" to anyone with an interest in music, not at all necessarily just an interest in the piano.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting, generous DVD March 30, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The flavor of the quadrennial Cliburn competition, its tensions and triumphs, is followed by complete stunning performances of Tchaikovsky's First and Rachmaninoff's Third Piano Concertos by the two top pianists. I won't give away the unprecedented outcome of that year's tight contest. There are behind-the-scenes glimpses of judges conferring and hosts encouraging. As always, James Conlon, who I've interviewed twice for public radio, is a thoughtful and compassionate guide for soloist and audience alike. One side of this DVD contains the contest feature; the other side, the full concert performances. Rating: 4.5
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fine documentary and good performances on Side B June 10, 2007
I enjoyed this DVD and especially the performances of Olga Kern. There must be something about going to a live performance of hers (as I've noticed other reviewers comment on) that captivates and somewhat provides us a bias towards her. My wife and I saw her perform the Schumann concerto a couple of years ago with the Utah Symphony and it was one of the highlights of the season - she was quite captivating, and emotive as always.

In the documentary, I especially liked the interaction between the good people of Fort Worth who open their homes to these (dare I say it) eccentric musicians. Worlds apart, they seem to have a common interest through the music and this competion which is of course world reknowned.

I also learned something of the structure of these events, never having competed in one myself (other than state band contest stuff). I especially liked the rehearsal sessions (for the competitors who made it that far) with the orchestra and Maestro Conlon - his patience and thoughtfulness deserved some kind of medal as well.

The Rachmaninoff 3rd on Side B was enjoyable to hear and watch, but for those unfamliar with Kerns 'theatrics' may be a bit much. The Tchaikovsky was also good, performed by Gold Co-medalist Stanislav Ioudenitch, but I just don't find it as interesting as the Rachmaninoff.

I suppose I agree with those who complained about the indexing issues on the documentary and on the liner notes, but I haven't really missed the deficiency of either.

W. Steven
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Mesmerizing
I believe this is the best of all the Van Cliburn competition DVDs. The music is gorgeous, the musicians are adorable and amazingly talented, and the closeups at the keyboard are... Read more
Published 7 months ago by H. Candelaria
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
Phenomenal back stage stories of the contestants with focus on the winners,
Olga Kern's performance of the Rach 3 is beyond comparison - truly magical - if you are not in... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Whistle
5.0 out of 5 stars Playing On the Edge
This video is a "Must" for concert music lovers. If you enjoyed the movie "The Competition", this movie is the real thing without the fictional plot and is way more dramatic. Read more
Published 23 months ago by John F. Horner
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cliburn Playing on the Edge
This is probably one of the best music video I ever owned. From the technical side, the video is well edited and compiled. Read more
Published on January 1, 2012 by C. Chan
5.0 out of 5 stars One of My Favorites of All Time
This DVD was sent promptly, and in excellent condition. I bought it after I had viewed it and simply wanted to experience it over and over. Read more
Published on October 20, 2010 by Barbara S. Sweeton
4.0 out of 5 stars A Contest of Great Amazing Pianists
"The Cliburn: Playing on the Edge" is a exquisite view of the Eleventh Van Cliburn piano Competition. Read more
Published on May 28, 2010 by Loyd E. Eskildson
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cliburn
This is an excellent DVD. The documentary is almost like a feature film, very captivating, the interviews very impromptu and quite interesting, full of delightful human interest. Read more
Published on August 20, 2009 by Keith M. Deutsher
3.0 out of 5 stars Once again, the good, the bad and the arguably ugly ....
Well, this one had some surprises at the very get-go and I must agree with the original 2002 reviewer that the absence of any DVD scene tracking capability whatsoever or even a... Read more
Published on April 27, 2007 by Anthony J. Lomenzo
5.0 out of 5 stars Most Interesting Stuff!!
A most interesting film.

Interesting in that all award winners here (and not just the gold medalists) are very good pianists. Read more
Published on February 13, 2006 by BLee
5.0 out of 5 stars Piano enthusiast
Although this DVD is nice and reveals the efforts put forth behind the scenes, Tchaikovsky's piano concerto has been performed better than that seen on this video. Read more
Published on February 9, 2005 by Russell Madison
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