Murrsy Lerner's superb documentary chronicles the late violinist's historic trip to Peking in 1979 as a cultural ambassador from the West. In the wake of the repressive Cultural Revolution in Communist China, we see a gradual re-opening of communication, as musicians and artists are free once again to experience and appreciate musical traditions outside China. Stern is there as teacher and cheerleader, spreading a refreshingly human, emotional approach to the interpretation of great music.
In In "From Mao," Lerner expertly captures Stern's warm, natural persona, as he encourages young Chinese musicians to not just play musical notes, but to feel them. We watch as the master violinist invigorates and inspires his listeners with this simple message: if you feel the joy of the music yourself, you will spread it to all who hear you play. Don't miss this intimate, revealing glimpse into a first-rate musician and human being. It's sure to leave you moved and illuminated.