Touch The Sound (2004)



Critic Consensus: Not only does this documentary introduce viewers to Glennie, it gives them a taste of how she perceives the world.

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Movie Info

Evelyn Glennie is one of the world's most celebrated percussionists, and has produced acclaimed work in the classical, pop, and avant-garde fields. Glennie's collaborators include Icelandic avant-pop darling Björk, bluegrass-turned-jazz virtuoso Béla Fleck, the traditional Japanese ensemble Kodo, and pianist Murray Perahia. What makes Glennie's accomplishments all the more remarkable is the fact she is "profoundly deaf" -- a neurological disorder that surfaced in her childhood robbed her of most of her hearing, and while she can still pick up certain sounds, she primarily relies on feeling vibrations through her feet and her body to stay in communication with her musical partners. But Glennie has not only refused to see her hearing loss as a drawback, she generally doesn't acknowledge it in interviews or press releases, and has said she believes hearing is simply another form of touch. Touch the Sound is a documentary that looks at Glennie's life and career as she follows her passion for music, including her never-ending search for new instruments and percussive objects, her work with other hearing-impaired musicians, and a collaborative improvisational session with guitarist Fred Frith. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
Documentary , Drama , Musical & Performing Arts
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Critic Reviews for Touch The Sound

All Critics (50) | Top Critics (22)

[A] fascinating portrait.

Full Review… | April 15, 2009
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

A coy yet worthy profile of celebrated Scottish percussionist Evelyn Glennie.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Touch the Sound is remarkable not only because of Glennie's story -- a clinically deaf Grammy-winning musician who has played with the world's great orchestras -- but for the way Riedelsheimer uses sound.

December 8, 2005
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic

The movie makes an interesting addition to what could become Riedelsheimer's evolving and extraordinary gallery of movies that bring the creative process to life.

December 2, 2005
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic

It will be frustrating if you expect narrative and linear development. But if you take it on as a new point of view, valuable even if you don't completely comprehend it yet, Touch the Sound is worth the trip.

Full Review… | December 2, 2005
Denver Post
Top Critic

Riedelsheimer gives the viewer not only Glennie's music, but her own experience of it.

Full Review… | November 28, 2005
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Touch The Sound

I think it goes to prove that you can make a living and be a total weirdo. This woman should hook up with the Soundtracker. He hasn't figured out how to go around listening to things and make money off of it.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer


Interesting exploration of sound in a documentary about Evelyn Glennie, world class percussionist. Doubly interesting because she's also deaf.

Lesley N
Lesley N

Super Reviewer


This doc was visually dynamic for a movie about sound. It made me wish I had a great audio set-up for my TV. (Damn I wish I had money) The movie is about a drummer and her appreciation of rhythm and how music is everywhere and just the vibrations can inspire. Then, there are other surprises as the documentary keeps on. The movie has great sound captures from everyday life and while the grand central scene is great in it?s dichotomy of being both focused on the subject but capturing how everyone else who can hear it responds is great. And seeing her walk through Japan, especially the sensory overload of Shibuya and Shinjuku was fun. My only real complaint is that is does dwell quite a bit on parts of the story that really aren?t very exciting except for the technical elements.

Lee B
Lee B

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