"Silent movies never were silent ...
The man at the piano, the violinist, the sound maker at the percussion, the salon orchestra and the symphony orchestra: then as today, it was their job to give to the silent pictures  an audible expression - preferably LIVE!"  Günter A. Buchwald 

Since more than 40 years, Günter A. Buchwald is committing himself to this creative interplay as improvising soloist, conductor and composer. Thus, he became one of the pioneers of this genre and especially of the renaissance of silent movie concerts.
 

Since the late 70s, Buchwald has performed - based on his wide ranged repertoire - more than 2900 film concerts, conducting orchestras (Freiburger Philharmoniker, Bristol Ensemble, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, Basler und Zuger Sinfonietta e.a.) or chamber music groups (Giora Feidman & Arditti String Quartet, Jazzguitarrist Philippe Cathérine, New York based violist Martha Moog, Prima Vista Social Club e.a.) or improvising at the piano, with violin, viola and orgue.

The ”Freiburger Filmharmoniker” which he founded in 1992 and conducts since then, and his quartett ”Silent Movie Music Company” belong to the internationally most renowed ensembles for silent movie music.
He is the director of the
Bristol Music Silents and permanent guest conductor of the Freiburg Philh. Orchestra for film concerts. He's a is a regular guest of numerous international Film Festivals, such as the Berlinale, Bonn, Bristol, Bologna, Pordenone, Zürich, Nottingham, New York, Seattle, Tokyo, Kyoto, Belgrad, Rom.

Buchwald's repertoire of more than 2800 silent movies includes the canon of great silent movie classics: aside films by Murnau, Lang, Lubitsch and Pabst, also Sergej Eisenstein, René Clair, Buster Keaton and Chalie Chaplin, as well as silent movies from Hollywood, Italy, France and especially Japan.
He's considered a subtle interpreter of original film music by Chaplin such as "City Lights" and "The Circus".

Since he can count on his scene-precise knowledge of most of the silent movies still screened, his varied musical repertoire from
Baroque through Avantgarde to Jazz and Pop and his for stilistically confident talent for improvisation, his film concerts are not only based
on the original soundtracks or his own compositions, but often upon his spontaneous improvised solo accompaniment at the piano, with violin,
viola or orgue. 

Aside the reconstruction of
lost or incomplete original sound tracks, such as the score for "Battleship POTEMKIN" originally composed
by Nicolai Krijukov, Buchwald has composed several new original musics.


With the premier of his
first original soundtrack commissioned by the Goethe Institute Tokyo for the Japanese silent Movie
”Sumiko” Buchwald opened the International Filmfestival in Kyoto and Tokyo in 1997. This first succes was followed by 3 classical
short movies (René Clair, Jean Vido, Moholy-Nagy)
premiered at the Roma Aeterna festival in 2002, Murnau's ”FAUST”, premiered
with great acclaim at the Tokyo Film festival, and a new symphonic music for
"Nosferatu" premiered with the Freiburg Philharmonics
in 2015.

In 2017, his new soundtrack for "The Wind", a Hollywood production featuring Lilian Gish in the leading role, was premiered at the
Festival of Cividale del Friuli and at the Silent Movie Festival  in Pordenone.
Buchwald's next project, a new music for a restored and completed version of the spectacular, but long tome lost franco-russian
production "Casanova" from 1927, is programmed to be premiered in 2018 and shall set to music a DVD the Cinemathèque
Francaise
is planning to produce.


Buchwald is a laureate of the Prix Européen and the Freiburg Cultural award. He's teaching at the Freiburg Conservatory
and guest lecturer for film musicat the Universities of Zurich and Freiburg.








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He composed the music for the Japanese silent classic Nani ga konojo o so saseta ka (1930) which was restored in 1996 and had a hugely successful premiere at the opening gala of the Tokyo Film Festival in 1997.
His compositions for ”Paris qui dort”, ”A Propos de Nice” and ”City Gypsies” premiered in Rome within the scope of the RomaEuropa-Festivals 2002 Musica XXI.
For the Swiss-French silent film La Vocation d'André Carel he wrote a score for chamber orchestra, which premiered on ARTE in May 2005.
For the silent movie "Faust" by famous German director Murnau, he composed an original soundtrack for choir and quattuor which he permiered with great acclaim 1999 at the Tokyo festival..

2015, his symphonic soundtrack  for Murnau's "Nosferatu" was premiered by Freiburger Philharmoniker under his baton and received with standing ovation.

Günter A. Buchwald is laureate of the Prix Européens of the foundation Regiostiftung Oberrhein (1995) and of the Int. Zeltmusikfestivals Freiburg (2000).

He teaches musical education at the Musikhochschule Freiburg and gives guest lectures on film music at the universities of Zurich and Freiburg.