At 24 years old, Antonia Brico, a Dutch immigrant to the United States, dreams of becoming a conductor, but nobody here takes her ambition seriously; even her piano teacher advises her against taking the entrance exam for the conservatory. So she goes back to the motherland, where she begs famous conductor Willem Mengelberg for lessons. Uncomfortable with the idea, Mengelberg intead sends her to Berlin. It’s a circuitous route to success—but it works: It’s there that she becomes the first woman ever to conduct a professional symphony orchestra. Unfortunately her struggles don’t end with the momentous achievement, as personal and professional pressures alike take their toll, threatening to overwhelm her.
This stirring drama ends before another chapter in Brico’s life began: Returning to America, she worked as a conductor around the country, and she founded the Denver Businessmen’s Symphony—today known as the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra.
Maria Peters, Dave Schram, Quinten Schram and Christanne de Brujin will be in attendance
Sponsored by Barbara Bridges, Friends of UNFPA, Queen City Optical Provisions, Women’s Foundation of Colorado, Helliemae’s, KIND Snacks, Capital One Café
Producer: Dave Schram | Editor: Robin de Jong | Cinematographer: Rolf Dekens | Screenwriter: Maria Peters
Cast: Christanne de Bruijn, Benjamin Wainwright, Scott Turner Schofield, Seumas F. Sargent, Richard Sammel, Sian Thomas