Mrs Carey’s Concert

Mrs Carey’s Concert

(PG) Madman DVD

This extraordinary fly-on-the-wall documentary begins at a concert at the Opera House and works back with MLC girls’ school teacher Karen Carey as she prepares the girls, some willing and some not, for the performance.

Mrs Carey sets the bar high for the girls as she decides on a classical repertoire and requires 110 per cent of every student. Some do not share her passion and are not afraid to say so.

Her greatest challenge will be firing up the unwilling. Her antagonist is 16-year-old Iris Shi.

Waging open warfare against authority, the charismatic Iris is the focal point of student resistance to Carey’s Opera House ambitions and the only girl who gets seriously under her skin.

Emily Sun is Carey’s star musician and a different sort of headache: a gifted but troubled teenager on the threshold of a brilliant musical career if only … Carey wants Emily to solo in a Bruch Violin concerto.

Bringing out her best proves no easy task, because young Emily has her own distinctive take on everything.

To say this is an exceptional film is to make an egregious understatement. Mrs Carey’s Concert is about an inspirational and gifted music teacher making transformational music; it’s about coming of age, discovering and nurturing potential, giftedness, passion, courage, compliance, rebellion and transforming lives.

This is a gem of a film not to be missed and, now it’s on DVD, there is no excuse.

Adrian Drayton

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