Poetry News

Tomas Tranströmer Plays Piano in New Short Doc on New Official Website

By Harriet Staff

The official website in English for Nobel Laureate Tomas Tranströmer has been launched, with the poet's approval! First up is this great documentary made of Tranströmer's Nobel day. The accompanying biography contains a lot of worthy information about the poet, who suffered a stroke in 1990 and has been married for over fifty years to wife Monica. She has since been his "voice to the world." Also:

Since then he has only published two poetry collections and a short memoir. The stroke deprived him of most of his speech and left him unable to use his right arm. But Tomas Tranströmer is also an accomplished classical pianist. Unable to speak more than a few words, he can still express himself through music, despite only being able to play left-hand piano pieces. Swedish composers have written several left-hand piano pieces especially for him to play. This film by Pamela Robertson-Pearce and Neil Astley combines contemporary footage of Tranströmer, including his piano playing, with archive film and recordings of his readings....The two left-hand piano pieces Tranströmer plays in the film are by Fibich and Mompou.

Tomas Tranströmer from Neil Astley on Vimeo.

Tomas Tranströmer from Neil Astley on Vimeo.

The site also features information about readings, a piece about Tranströmer expert Niklas Schiöler's "hectic time" (we bet!) as well as an article by Schiöler himself on the poet's 1978 poem "Schubertiana,” and other reviews, videos, and articles on or about Tranströmer. Enjoy.

Originally Published: November 1st, 2011