© Ventura Film GmbH

Heimatklänge (Echoes of Home)
Switzerland/Germany 2007

Opening 11 Oct 2007

Directed by: Stefan Schwietert
Writing credits: Stefan Schwietert

This documentary negates every vision that the words “yodelling in Switzerland” call to mind. Yes, it’s about Switzerland and yes, it features three world-class Swiss musicians, who just happen to be yodellers, but they are so special, so different, that it is a pleasure to make their acquaintance. Christian Zehnder, accompanied by Balthasar Streiff on the Alphorn, uses his voice as an instrument to call forth whole concerts of songs and noises. He travels to Mongolia to sing with a local group, and they complement each other masterfully. Erika Stucky lived with her family in California until she was 10 years old, and they moved back to a small village in Switzerland. She draws on her American coolness, Swiss traditional music and some influences from studies in Paris and San Francisco to perform with Swiss rock star Sina. Noldi Alder and his brothers performed in a traditional Appenzell group, complete with Tyrolean hat and knee socks. Now Noldi has left that behind to sing his own compositions, solo. All three discuss the influence of Swiss landscapes (the Alps for example) on the singing. This is truly an unusual film worth seeing; the four stars are for anyone in the music business, whether for fun or profession. I saw it in Swiss German with German subtitles, but the music supersedes any language. (Becky Tan)

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