American Masters — Jascha Heifetz: God’s Fiddler

American Masters — Jascha Heifetz: God’s Fiddler

Fri, 04/17/2015 - 9:00pm

Pictured: Jascha Heifetz

Credit: Courtesy of Library of Congress 

Discover the story of legendary musician Jascha Heifetz (1901-1987).

Emmy- and Peabody-winning filmmaker Peter Rosen uncovers the story of legendary musician Jascha Heifetz, the first truly modern violin virtuoso. American Masters — Jascha Heifetz: God’s Fiddler premieres on WXXI-TV Friday, April 17 at 9 p.m. 

Setting the standard in violin playing for nearly a century, Heifetz’ name became shorthand for excellence for everyone from Jack Benny to The Muppets to Woody Allen. Through vintage performances and master classes, God’s Fiddler portrays an artist for whom only perfection would do. New interviews include other great violinists influenced by Heifetz, including Itzhak Perlman, Ivry Gitlis and Ida Haendel, former student, accompanist and longtime companion Ayke Agus, former student and master assistant in charge of his world-renowned violin class at the University of Southern California Sherry Kloss, and biographers John Anthony Maltese and Arthur Vered. They reveal how Heifetz was a mysterious, idiosyncratic, solitary figure who embodied the paradox of artistic genius: a dedication to his craft at all costs, including two failed marriages, estrangement from his children and very few friends. Characterized as serious and intense while performing and teaching, his students describe him as generous and playful when socializing.

Check out the trailer here: 

This local broadcast is supported in part by: