Lang Lang - The Art of Being a Virtuoso

Director Thomas Grube
Germany / 72 min. / 2011 / German, English

A virtuoso pianist with a careerist spirit, or, the polar opposite of I’m Not a Rockstar. How complex-free marketing and military apprenticeship can forge stars sans cracks. A great work about family ambition and business acumen.  


A virtuoso with the spirit of Coldplay, or the polar opposite of I’m Not a Rockstar. How complex-free marketing and military style apprenticeship can forge stars without cracks. In this case, family complicity and parent-teacher collusion breed the fruits of expectation: a classical piano star that behaves like Elton John. It doesn’t always run smoothly, and the story takes its toll on the family: the success of the son comes before marital bliss (the marriage is severed so that the father can accompany the son to the conservatory), and also before the kid’s own happiness. From there, the documentary takes us from Lang Lang’s declarations of business pragmatism and professional entrepreneurship, to his mother’s heartfelt lamentations (she who regrets having permitted this sort of education), and his father’s dictatorial discourses (“One must adopt a military attitude in order not to forget that one must practice”). Gulp. Today, Lang Lang controls the whole caboodle (photos, image, sponsorship), and talks about “lifestyle” and profile as much as he does about Liszt. Lang Lang is a manual on how to successfully direct a career, yes, but also a roadmap to the hurdles that form part and parcel. 



Showing format

in festivals
Jecheon International Music Festival

Lang Lang and his family, Christoph Eschenbach, Herbie Hancock, HRH Prince Charles

Thomas Grube

Nicolas Hudak

Sound designer
Sebastian Schmidt

Music Composer
Franz Liszt

Thomas Grube, Uwe Dierks

Film company
Boomtown Media International

Film distributor
Boomtown Media International

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