Ballad of Bering Strait

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Total Count: 12

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Movie Info

Directed by Nina Gilden Seavey, The Ballad of Bering Strait is a documentary about a group of Russian teenagers who move to Nashville to make it big as country stars. The band Bering Strait started in Obninsk, Russia, after a music teacher had introduced his students to bluegrass. In 1992, the lead guitarist, Ilya Toshinsky, visited the Tennessee Banjo Institute, and a year later the band moved to Oak Ridge, TN, on an exchange program. In 1999, they signed with Arista records and began recording an album with producer Brent Maher and manager Mike Kinnamon. In the film, the six-piece band wades through the music-industry hassles of switching labels, losing contracts, and major debt as well as the immigration problems of language barriers, visa restrictions, and homesickness. Eventually they end up signing with a different label, recording an album, and going on tour.

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Critic Reviews for Ballad of Bering Strait

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (8)

  • It isn't wildly imaginative, but its subjects are novel enough in their own right.

    Feb 28, 2003
  • The documentary never gets more than skin deep.

    Feb 28, 2003
  • It's a coming-out party of a project that is never less than engaging.

    Feb 24, 2003
  • While the film frequently concentrates on the wrong story, the humanity of the musicians comes through in their own words and actions.

    Feb 21, 2003
  • What makes the story worthwhile is the candor and personality of the band members.

    Feb 20, 2003 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • This competently made picture seems a rehash, and not a terribly interesting one.

    Feb 19, 2003 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Ballad of Bering Strait

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