A Fiddler’s Tale – Louis Kaufman (with Annette Kaufman) How Hollywood and Vivaldi Discovered Me
Read by Annette Kaufman – Unabridged – 14 Compact Discs (Includes Bonus Disc of Musical Selections)
Louis Kaufman (1905-1994) was probably the most recorded violinist in history, with more than one hundred major concert works and hundreds of film soundtracks to his credit. This fascinating memoir, by one of the greatest American violinist of the twentieth century, recounts an extraordinary life in musc. Once called by the New York Times “a violinist’s violinists and a musician’s musician,” Louis Kaufman born in 1905 in Portland, Oregon, studied violin with Franz Kneisl at New York’s Institute of Musical Art. He was the original violist of the Musical Art Quartet (1926-1933) and won the Naumburg Award (1928), the same year as his American solo recital debut in New York’s Town Hall. During his youth he played chamber music with Pablo Casals, Mischa Elman, Jascha Heifetz, Fritz Kreisler, Gregor Piatigorsky, and Efrem Zimbalist, among others. After performing the violin solos for Ernst Lubitsch’s 1934 film The Merry Widow, Kaufman became the most sought after violin soloist in Hollywood, playing in some 500 films, including Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, The Diary of Anne Frank, Wuthering Heights, The Grapes of Wrath, and Spartacus. He worked closely with Robert Russell Bennett, Bernard Herrmann, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Alfred Newman, Miklós Rózsa, Max Steiner, Franz Waxman, and Victor Young. Extraordinary as it seems today, Kaufman was largely responsible for bringing the once-forgotten music of Antonio Vivaldi to its current popularity worldwide among classical musicians and general music lovers. Kaufman, something of a Renaissance man, was a keen eyed-art collector, stalwart advocate of modern music and even an accomplished memorist.