“Glenn Gould: Hereafter” is the latest Bruno Monsaingeon film
I’ve seen about this iconic Canadian pianist. This 2005 DVD
was released the following year on the Ideale Audience label.
This film is unique in that Monsaingeon opted to present the
material as if “narrated from beyond” by Glenn Gould (1932-1982),
using the voice of Rory Brenner. Monsaingeon also creates
five different characters portrayed by actors filmed
“talking with Gould,” as if they are communicating with him
from beyond the grave. As a result of Monsaingeon’s interesting
creative choices, I had a different viewing experience than
what I’ve come to expect from a “standard” documentary.
Actual archival footage of Gould was also featured and heard
aplenty, much of which was taken from films by Monsaingeon
and others. However, quite a bit of the footage on this disc has
never been shown before, thereby making it essential viewing
for “Gouldians” everywhere. In his usual rapid-fire, cogent
manner, Gould discusses his views on music, the role of the
audience, the recording process, and other relevant topics.
Watching this discourse reinforced my respect for the height
of his genius. Examples of Gould playing music from a broad
spectrum of the Classical repertoire were included as well,
proving the astonishing range of his musical interests
beyond all doubt.
One of the things I personally liked about this film was the
opportunity to see Bruno Monsaingeon in front of the camera
as of 2005, and film clips from his earlier conversations with
Gould that were completed before his death. There’s even 1991
footage of Monsaingeon and three other string players performing
Gould’s “String Quartet, Opus 1!” Although there are no bonus
features, the aforementioned “premiere” footage on this
106-minute DVD makes this another Monsaingeon “must-see.”