Orchestra of Exiles is a densely layered documentary about prodigious Polish violinist Bronislaw Huberman’s epic fight to establish the Palestine Symphony.
Presenting a roll-call of characters that could hardly be more diverse – Goebbels; renowned conductors Furtwangler and Toscanini; and a future head of state, Chaim Weizmann – this film also features the families of victimised Jewish musicians from the ranks of orchestras across central Europe. Even arguably the most famous Jew in the world played a role in this heroic tale; a man who, among other pursuits, was an amateur violinist who liked to read music with Huberman – Albert Einstein.
During the bleakest days of a Europe savagely crippled by anti- Semitism and Nazi aggression, Huberman’s remarkable efforts saved hundreds of Jewish families from the encroaching Holocaust. He quite literally changed the landscape of cultural history with his four year fight to found what would eventually be known as the Israel Philharmonic.