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Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th #2716416
02/22/18 01:56 PM
02/22/18 01:56 PM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 159
Tennessee
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Chili_Time Offline OP
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SIAP. May have to wait a while for it to hit Netflix if the theater release is limited to Ireland.



Stumbled across this and did not see a thread yet. Thought some of you may want to see it when it is released in April.

MAKING THE GRADE invites us into the world of the piano lesson. Every year teachers and students throughout Ireland prepare for graded musical exams. These exams can be pleasing for some but daunting for others. Each student has their own goal but reaching Grade Eight is considered a pinnacle. This endearing and uplifting documentary explores the bond between piano teachers and their pupils as they struggle through these grades. This is a story of the transformative power of music and the pride and happiness it provides both the students and teachers. It may inspire us all to keep making the grade.

The filmmakers travelled the length and breadth of the country to film with teachers and their students as they prepared for their piano grade exams. The film features characters from as far afield as Kylemore Abbey in the West, to Derry City in the North and down to Crosshaven, Cork in the South.

MAKING THE GRADE is directed by Ken Wardrop and produced by Andrew Freedman. MAKING THE GRADE is a Reel Art film funded by the Arts Council

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Last edited by Chili_Time; 02/22/18 01:58 PM.

First Lesson Oct. 17, 2017. Currently in Faber Piano Adventures Book 3a. Yamaha P-115. I play a little bass guitar also.
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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2716440
02/22/18 03:27 PM
02/22/18 03:27 PM
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bennevis Offline
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Thanks for the heads up - that looks interesting to me as one who went through all the grade exams as a kid. (Though in my case, I realized that I couldn't just stop at Grade 8 - after I'd got my Grade 8.....). It's always interesting to compare my own lessons and my exam 'ordeals' with that of young (and not-so-young) students of today grin.

However, I wonder whether American students & teachers (very few of whom went through such exams) would regard this movie as totally foreign in its concept. OK, it is foreign, even if you're of Irish descent........ wink


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2716443
02/22/18 03:38 PM
02/22/18 03:38 PM
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Why would this movie be ‘foreign’ to Americans??? It discusses the joy of learning, the structure of the piano lesson, and “your own interpretation of the music “. Believe it or not, these are standards common to Americans as well, even if all of us did not take graded exams. I’m hoping the movie will be released here in the US


"Music, rich, full of feeling, not soulless, is like a crystal on which the sun falls and brings forth from it a whole rainbow" - F. Chopin
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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: dogperson] #2716446
02/22/18 03:49 PM
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bennevis Offline
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Originally Posted by dogperson
Why would this movie be ‘foreign’ to Americans??? It discusses the joy of learning, the structure of the piano lesson, and “your own interpretation of the music “. Believe it or not, these are standards common to Americans as well, even if all of us did not take graded exams.

Unless I'm very much mistaken, this movie is about students (and their teachers) preparing for grade exams - not about students having piano lessons per se.

As for the 'foreignness' of it, just have a look at some of the replies I've gotten over the years in PW when I talk about grade exams, ranging from total incomprehension to "what's that got to do with piano?".


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2716451
02/22/18 04:02 PM
02/22/18 04:02 PM
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Upstate SC
dobro Offline
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It looks to be very interesting. I wonder when it will hit my local cable? I’m a dinosaur.


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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: bennevis] #2716453
02/22/18 04:05 PM
02/22/18 04:05 PM
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Chili_Time Offline OP
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Originally Posted by bennevis
Thanks for the heads up - that looks interesting to me as one who went through all the grade exams as a kid. (Though in my case, I realized that I couldn't just stop at Grade 8 - after I'd got my Grade 8.....). It's always interesting to compare my own lessons and my exam 'ordeals' with that of young (and not-so-young) students of today grin.

However, I wonder whether American students & teachers (very few of whom went through such exams) would regard this movie as totally foreign in its concept. OK, it is foreign, even if you're of Irish descent........ wink


It looks fascinating to me even though the grade system is not something I am familiar with. It seems like a movie about the universal struggle to reach a goal that takes time, dedication and determination and it just happens to be about pianos. Whether it be running a marathon, losing 100 pounds or learning to play piano as an adult the human struggle is a good topic for a documentary.. The fact it is a piano themed movie makes it that much more interesting to me personally. I'll watch a feel good documentary about people yearning toward a goal and fighting through the ups and downs of the journey whether it be learning to be a chef, training for athletics or completing law school or whatever. It may not gain a wide audience but it looks like it will be interesting. Then again I enjoy playing the pieces in my piano method even if it just "row row row your boat" book so I'm probably way outside the mainstream. laugh

Last edited by Chili_Time; 02/22/18 04:08 PM.

First Lesson Oct. 17, 2017. Currently in Faber Piano Adventures Book 3a. Yamaha P-115. I play a little bass guitar also.
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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2716460
02/22/18 04:24 PM
02/22/18 04:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Chili_Time
Whether it be running a marathon, losing 100 pounds or learning to play piano as an adult the human struggle is a good topic for a documentary.. The fact it is a piano themed movie makes it that much more interesting to me personally. I'll watch a feel good documentary about people yearning toward a goal and fighting through the ups and downs of the journey whether it be learning to be a chef, training for athletics or completing law school or whatever. It may not gain a wide audience but it looks like it will be interesting.

I don't think there's ever been a movie on such a theme before - perhaps not surprisingly, as the audience isn't likely to be large.

There have been movies about pianists, piano competitions (like "The Competition"), piano prodigies, the piano as the centrepiece of a movie about unrequited love & tragedy ("The Piano"), even about the hothousing of kids and their training towards international stardom (a Russian documentary-movie where - apparently - a pre-requisite for entry into music school was perfect pitch: the teacher played a four-note chord, and the child had to name all four notes instantly without sight of the keyboard......), but this must be the first about ordinary people - children & adults - learning piano and preparing for piano exams which have nothing to do with becoming concert pianists.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2716552
02/23/18 12:57 AM
02/23/18 12:57 AM
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Adelaide, South Australia
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Looks like a wonderful film.

One of my warmest memories of Ireland was when I was in a music shop in Dublin. Pianos all lined up in rows, with young kids of all ages sitting and playing at the various instruments. Just a great atmosphere.

Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2720989
03/13/18 10:40 PM
03/13/18 10:40 PM
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Please let us know if we can view it in the US someplace


Marci
Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: MarciajsR] #2721201
03/14/18 05:58 PM
03/14/18 05:58 PM
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JohnSprung Offline
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Originally Posted by MarciajsR
Please let us know if we can view it in the US someplace


It looks like the sort of thing that PBS would be likely to pick up.


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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2721246
03/14/18 09:19 PM
03/14/18 09:19 PM
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David Farley Offline
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I've shown this trailer to some non-piano people who expressed more interest than I expected. I think it pushes the "I wish I (still) played piano" button.

Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: bennevis] #2723778
03/23/18 03:49 PM
03/23/18 03:49 PM
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not in Japan anymore
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Oh, I hope I'll be able to see it!! It looks like a wonderful film.

I would guess even for someone who'd never tried to prepare for a grade exam, there will be much that resonates for any of us who've taken formal lessons, maybe prepared for a recital with a teacher, etc.

BTW, I did actually take several grade exams, but in Japan, not in the US.

Originally Posted by bennevis
but this must be the first about ordinary people - children & adults - learning piano and preparing for piano exams which have nothing to do with becoming concert pianists.


I'm sure you're right, especially the point about ordinary people.


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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2724473
03/26/18 03:08 PM
03/26/18 03:08 PM
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Chili_Time Offline OP
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I watched this movie over the weekend and the piano playing in this is quite entertaining. If you like ragtime you'll like this. You can stream it for free on Amazon if you are a Prime Member.


Last edited by Chili_Time; 03/26/18 03:11 PM.

First Lesson Oct. 17, 2017. Currently in Faber Piano Adventures Book 3a. Yamaha P-115. I play a little bass guitar also.
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Re: Piano Movie: Making The Grade In Cinemas April 13th [Re: Chili_Time] #2724527
03/26/18 07:25 PM
03/26/18 07:25 PM
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This seems very interesting. I look forward to seeing it.


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