The Ballad of Fred Hersch


Lark Theatre Tue, Oct 11, 2016 8:00 PM
Sequoia 2 Wed, Oct 12, 2016 6:00 PM
Film Info
Mind the Gap
Running Time:74 min.
Director:Charlotte Lagarde
Carrie Lozano
Producer:Charlotte Lagarde
Carrie Lozano
Cinematographer:Andy Schocken
Octavio Warnock-Graham
Charlotte Lagarde
Editor:Warwick Meade
Carrie Lozano
Print Source:Swell Cinema
Note Writer:Laura Henneman


With his hands on the piano keys, eyes closed, leaning forward as if listening for the instrument to guide him, Fred Hersch is a man in complete harmony with his universe, fluidly carving melodies out of thin air. Away from the keys, he’s a soft-spoken, warm but exacting composer and collaborator in music and in life, who knows precisely what he wants to hear. Hersch has always been a rarity in the jazz world—a young musician in the '70s and '80s accepted by an older generation of bebop greats; a publicly gay man in the '90s Midwest, bravely and openly HIV-positive; and presently, an eight-time Grammy nominee staging a multimedia performance inspired by his miraculous survival of a two-month, AIDS-related coma. MVFF alumnae filmmakers Charlotte Lagarde and Carrie Lozano began working with Hersch to document that performance, and that collaboration lead to a much deeper and wonderfully intimate portrait of an incomparable artist.

Guests in attendance 10/11 & 10/12: Carrie Lozano (director), Fred Hersch (subject)

Tickets for the concert at Sweetwater with Fred Hersch on 10/12 sold separately.
Click here to purchase.

Sponsored by:

Thanks to our Community Partners Frameline and SFJAZZ

Additional Information

Carrie Lozano is an award winning documentary filmmaker and journalist. She is currently a consultant for independent documentary filmmakers, the Bay Area Video Coalition, and U.C. Berkeley's Investigative Reporting Program. Prior to that she was executive producer of documentaries at Al Jazeera America and senior producer of the network's Emmy and Peabody-winning series Fault Lines. Among other work, she produced The Weather Underground and Utopia in Four Movements, and produced and directed Reporter Zero.

Documentary filmmaker Charlotte Lagarde's love of the ocean led her to direct poignant portraits of magnificent water women; Heart of the Sea (PBS Independent Lens Audience Award, Best Documentary Award at the Ashland Independent Film Festival) which was broadcast in over 30 countries, Zeuf (Sundance Channel) and Swell (CINE Golden Eagle Award). Her producing credits include In the Matter of Cha Jung Hee (POV) and Academy Award-winning Reporter Zero. She has received funding from ITVS, NEA and NEH. She is a Sundance and BAVC fellow and is on the Steering Committee of New Day Films.