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Alice Sommer Herz  - ' Everything is a Present' : A tribute by Director Christopher Nupen (BK)

Alice Sommer Herz


Director Christopher Nupen’s most recent film, Everything is a Present – The Wonder and the Grace of Alice Sommer Herz — is scheduled for broadcast on BBC 2 on Holocaust Memorial Day, 27th January at 23:20, its first broadcast on BBC 2.


Nupen’s film with Alice Sommer Herz has picked up four high-level international accolades to date and is nominated for DVD of the Year Award — a prize which he has won three times in four years. The winner will be announced on 6 April.

His subject, Alice Sommer Herz, is one of the most unusual people in the world. She is a concentration camp survivor who is 107 years old, lives alone in a small flat in London and practices the piano for 2 ½ hours every day. Through a bestselling book which was published when she was 104, and which has already been translated into seven different languages, and also through Christopher Nupen’s first prize-winning film about Alice,
We Want the Light, Alice also know as Gigi, is thought of as a sage and a saint by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. Her quiet grace in the face of appalling suffering in the Theresienstadt concentration camp, where she lost both her mother and her husband, touches the hearts of all who discover her.

Alice played more than 100 concerts in the Nazi Concentration camp in which she was imprisoned with her six year old son and credits music with having saved her life and her sanity as well as the lives of many others. She elaborates on her extraordinary story in the film. The film is also a historical document that bears witness both factually and musically.

The first signs that EVERYTHING IS A PRESENT might have an extra-ordinary impact in the world came from the reactions of many delegates at the Midem Avant Première Screenings in Cannes, confirmed by the words which followed in the leading Swiss newspaper, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung — more words than the critic gave to any other film shown during the entire four days — and ending with:

"This film is a plea for humanity and the power of music and, finally, a Must for every television station with any self-respect." ("Ein Plädoyer für die Menschlichkeit und die Kraft der Musik. Und eigentlich ein Muss für jeden Fernsehsender, der etwas auf sich hält.")

Christopher Nupen


Christopher Nupen

Director Christopher Nupen’s track record is unequaled in his field and, as so often in the past, his film is highly unusual in its nature, in its content and in its structure. It is also deeply touching.

Through close relationships with the artists and by showing aspects of music and music making that are not generally accessible, even to the concert going public, Allegro Films has been able to produce a series of intimate portraits of great performers that have come to be recognized as classics and which have longevity that is rarely achieved by television programming and produce focused, high-quality classical music films with some of the world’s best loved musicians.

Bill Kenny

More information on Alice Sommer Herz :


More about Allegro films and Christopher Nupen :

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