Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould – review

This documentary about Glenn Gould corrects some of the wilder myths about the astonishingly talented pianist, writes Peter Bradshaw

The great pianist Glenn Gould is often caricatured as a crazy hermit somewhere between Syd Barrett and Howard Hughes; Gould wore overcoats and gloves in hot summer and abandoned the concert stage at the height of his career. This thoughtful biodoc rescues Gould from the cliches and re-establishes him as a musician. Was he a recluse? Hardly, he became a prolific broadcaster with a Pythonesque sense of humour. A classical music snob? No, he cheerfully recorded a radio show about Petula Clark. An ascetic? No, he had a passionate relationship with a married woman and became a much-loved, temporary stepfather to her children. Undoubtedly, Gould was an eccentric and a hypochondriac, but this film argues for his human vulnerability.


Peter Bradshaw

The GuardianTramp

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