The trumpeter Rike Huy and the violinist Joosten Ellée are both classically trained musicians. One from “early music”, the other from “new music”, both share a passion for cool electronic music and dark cinematic narratives. In 2015 they met at the Lucerne Festival and worked together for the first time for the score for the…
The film “Live” by Lisa Charlotte Friederich takes place in a near dystopian future, in which all public life – including concerts – has been moved to virtual space because of the danger of terrorist attacks. It combines science fiction elements and a classic sibling conflict to create a thrilling drama full of stirring music. Its basic premise – human encounters are, with a few exceptions, only allowed virtually – shows disturbing parallels to the current situation.
The world in a near future: The number of terrorist attacks has increased so drastically that encounters with other people and any form of cultural life can only take place in virtual space. Public gatherings are prohibited for security reasons. There are no more concerts, no more supermarkets, no theatre, no pubs.
The psychologist Claire counsels survivors of terrorist attacks. When one day she finds a ticket, an analogue piece of paper, in the possession of a patient, she breaks out of her life in isolation. Driven by the need for community, she and her brother Aurel, a star trumpeter who for years has only stood in front of virtual audiences, plan a secret live concert in front of real, physically present people. With the help of the hackers Ada and Maximus, they succeed in realising their plan despite all adversities. When the mother of the siblings turns up shortly afterwards, an age-old conflict breaks out, confronting Claire with an insurmountable opponent: herself.
“Live” is a frighteningly relevant film that gets under one’ s skin because of its cool aesthetics, poignant music and a great cast.
About Lisa Charlotte Friederich:
Lisa Charlotte Friederich studied acting at the HfMDK Stuttgart and applied theatre science at the JLU Gießen. After guest engagements in Düsseldorf, Stuttgart and Heidelberg, she was a permanent member of the ensemble at Theater Lübeck from 2010 to 2012. Her filmography as an actress includes roles in “Tatort“, “Soko Köln“, “Der Staatsanwalt“, “Die Toten von Salzburg” and many more.
The feature film “Fritz Lang“, in which she plays the female lead, won the Hessian Film Award in 2016. Her work as a director is characterised by a wide range, extending from performative music theatre formats to narrative feature film productions.
In 2019 she wrote and directed the multimedia music theatre play “Castor & Pollux“, which premiered at the International Music Festival Heidelberg Spring. She worked several times with the composer and director Heiner Goebbels and met the musician Rike Huy at one of these music theatre productions. The two of them produced “Live“, Lisa’s directorial debut film, whose script shows unexpected parallels to the pandemic events of 2020. The film celebrated its premiere in January 2020 at the Max Ophüls Film Festival and won the “Regional Feature Film Award” of the Dr. Marschner Foundation at the Lichter Filmfest Frankfurt International in April 2020.
Director’s note by Lisa Charlotte Friederich:
“My very first visit to the opera was on the rocks because I was actually sick. Fortunately, I was allowed to come along anyway. I was about three years old and was sandwiched between my mother and grandmother. It was insanely hot and dark. When the Queen of the Night was being lifted out of the slot for her great revenge aria, a generous amount of stage fog came into play and the orchestra roared off, while I had the feeling that I could grasp the singer with my hand. I thought it was magnificent.
From today’s perspective, this visit to the opera seems insane. I am also absolutely against going into crowds of people when you are ill or carelessly triggering infection chains. But since the appearance of the corona virus, I keep remembering intensive concert or theatre experiences, of which this first visit to the opera is one of the most impressive. Back in the days when we still clung to each other loaded with germs, when I inhaled not only the perfume of the old lady next to me but also her viruses and the gentleman behind me coughed over me in a friendly manner. Today these infectious memories accompany the anxious question whether – at some point – it will again be possible to sit close together in the dark, listening, following a story, dancing and touching each other.
Original title: Live
Director: Lisa Charlotte Friederich
Screenplay: Lisa Charlotte Friederich
Actor & actresses: Karoline Marie Reinke, Anton Spieker, Corbinian Deller, Sonja Dengler, Ulrike Knospe, Julian Greis, Sithembile Menck, Christine Chapman, Arthur Romanowski, Firas Zarka, Monika Dortschy, Tanja von Oertzen
Producer: Lisa Charlotte Friederich, Rike Huy
Cinematography: Ivàn Robles Mendoza, Tom Keller
Editing: Florentine Bruck, Lisa Charlotte Friederich
Sound: Ana Monte, Daniel Deboy, Janis Grossmann, Mohammad Sadek, Philip Wagner
Camera & electrical department: Thomas Bannier, Simon Wottreng, Nadine Willeke, Sebastian Neubert, Felix Ehlert, Sebastian Handke, Michael Heinrich, Sophia Igel, Nils Itjeshorst, Laura Krestan, Nicoline Kurth, Janis Pohl, Tim Seger, Hye Seon, Sriram Srivigneswaramoorthy
Production management and assistant: Elisabeth Krefta, Anna Pietocha, Aaron Stephan, Caroline Zimmermann
Production design: Maria Anissimowa, Frank Schönwald
Costume design: Tanja Liebermann, Malina A. Epp
Art Department: Elenya Bannert, Nele Faust, Dominik Vock
Makeup: Julia Cosic, Valentina Becker
Music: Rike Huy, Josten Ellée
Production company: ⎮li⎮ke⎮ Filme
Genres: Drama, Science Fiction, Music
Year of production: 2020
Lenght: 83 Min
Rating: FSK 12
Aspect ratio: 1:1,89
2020 Lichter Filmfest Frankfurt: Prize of the local longfilm -> Live
Film label: Artkeim²
Premiere: January 22, 2020 (Filmfestival Max Ophüls Preis, Saarbrücken, Germany)
Theatrical start: December 10, 2020
DVD start: February 26, 2021
VoD-Start: December 10, 2020
Director’s note by Lisa Charlotte Friederich (continued):
“Live” is about this basic human need to gather together, about the need to sit around the campfire, in front of the silver screen, in the middle of the sound waves.
When I started writing the screenplay for “Live“, the starting point for the story was first of all the sibling conflict: Cain and Abel. The question of how it comes about that one person kills another. In order to put this conflict into a world of its own, I looked for a greater equivalent on a social level, for a translation of the individual conflict into a state of tension a whole country is in.
In the summer of 2016, when I wrote the script, there was a series of extremist attacks in Germany. The setting of “Live“, which is based on the fragility of human coexistence, was not created against the background of a virus spreading globally, but rather against the impression of these attacks. I did not invent the individual elements of a society in lockdown, but they already existed – here or in other parts of the world. I have condensed and put them together for the script.
Times of crisis can put human conflicts under a magnifying glass. Claire, the main character of “Live“, is experiencing an unexpected turn in the path she takes to do the right thing. She cannot know where her actions will lead her. In this sense I feel a kinship with my main character: I could not have known that the world I had invented for “Live” would be overtaken by reality eight weeks after the premiere of the film, that there would be contact restrictions, closed schools, concerts without an audience, curfews and abandoned pubs. Whatever you do, you just don’t know what’s coming.”
About Rike Huy (Music and production):
Rike Huy is a trumpet player and is working in a variety of artistic fields. She is solo trumpeter in the Basel Sinfonietta, an orchestra for contemporary music. In 2019 she was on tour as a band member of the singer Peaches and together with Lisa Charlotte Friederich produced the feature film “Live” and co-composed and recorded the film music.
She studied trumpet in Berlin, Paris and Hanover and has won several international mu-sic competitions. 2011-12 Rike Huy held a scholarship at the International Ensemble Modern Academy. Since then she has been working mainly in the new music scene, both as a soloist and in ensembles (Ensemble Modern, Ensemble Musikfabrik, Collegium Novum Zurich), and has been a guest solo trumpeter in various orchestras (including the Museumsorchester Frankfurt, hr-Sinfonieorchester). From 2014 to 2018 Rike Huy studied Applied Theatre Studies with Heiner Goebbels. During this time she met Lisa Charlotte Friederich at a music theatre production for the Ruhrtriennale.
After joint projects in this field, they founded their production company ⎮li⎮ke⎮ Filme and produced their first film together, “Live“. She is currently working on her first solo album.
“No one had any plans to produce a film. We had a story that we wanted to tell. With lots of music and a few friends. It was all prompted by a scholarship from the Kunststiftung Baden-Württemberg that Lisa had won. A little bit of money that made something possible that would otherwise have been im-possible. Our lives as a musician and an actress had begun to change: The attacks in Paris on the Bataclan concert and a music festival in Nuremberg that had been cancelled due to terror warnings put a fundamental question mark behind our everyday lives. Would there still be concerts and theatre? Cinemas? Christmas markets? Supermarkets? That was our assumption.
And it soon turned out that without a production there would be no story. So we founded ⎮li⎮ke⎮ Filme (Lisa and Rike) and started with the financing. We were able to gain numerous sponsors, supporters and further grants for the project. In the post-production phase, we were supported by MFG Baden-Württemberg – the small scale project with a few friends had by then already turned into a completed feature film. Apart from the in-ind sponsoring and the grants, working on “Live” was made possible by the people we met along the way: the actors and our team behind the camera and in post-production. Telling a science fiction film with a lot of music on a tight budget and with only a small number of shooting days required creative solutions, quick decisions, accuracy and passion for the subject from everyone involved in both production and post-production. We are very happy and grateful that we found these people to produce “Live” with them.
Rike Huy and Lisa Charlotte Friederich .
About Karoline Marie Reinke (as Claire):
Karoline Marie Reinke was born in Dortmund in 1981. She studied acting at the University Mozarteum Salzburg. During her training she guested at the Schauspielhaus Zurich and at the Ruhrtriennale. After completing her acting studies, Karoline Marie Reinke was a permanent member of the ensemble and guest at the Schauspiel Köln, the Staatstheater Mainz and the theatres in Augsburg and Lübeck.
In addition to her work as a theatre actress, she also works as a film and television actress and voice actress, e.g. for Hessischer Rundfunk. Since 2016 Karoline Marie Reinke has been a member of the ensemble of the Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden.
About Anton Spieker (as Aurel):
Anton Spieker, born in Berlin in 1989, studied acting at the Ernst Busch Academy of Dramatic Arts and made guest appearances after and parallel to his studies at the Deutsches Theater Berlin, the Berliner Ensemble, the Hans-Otto Theater Potsdam and the bat-Theater. For his performance in the film “Von jetzt an kein Zurück” he was awarded the German Actor Award 2015 as “best newcomer actor“, for his performance in “303” he won the “newcomer actor award“ at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Film Art Festival. He worked with directors such as Hans Weingartner, Matthias Glasner, Rick Ostermann, Christian Frosch, Johannes Fabrick, Eoin Moore, Vivian Naefe, Hannu Salonen and many more. Apart from appearances in the cinema, Anton’s roles include numerous television formats such as “Tatort“, “Polizeiruf 110“, “Unter Verdacht“, “Donna Leon” and many more.
About Ulrike Knospe (as Mutter / Gott):
Ulrike Knospe is from Essen. She studied acting at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz. The most important theatre stations in recent years have been Heidelberg, Mannheim, Schauspielhaus Zürich, Lübeck, the Bremer Shakespeare Company and the Ernst Deutsch Theatre in Hamburg. She played Marthe in Goethe‘s “Faust“, Elisabeth in “Maria Stuart” by Schiller, Olga in “Three Sisters” by Chekhov, Margarete in Shakespeare‘s “Richard III” and Judith in Daniel Kehlmann‘s “Heilig Abend“.
She regularly works as a voice actress and takes part in TV productions (including “Tatort”, “Bella Block“, “Der Dicke“, “Küstenwache“, “Ein Fall für Zwei” etc.).
“…that the cast is excellent and the film music as well, becomes almost a minor matter. Never was a science fiction plot closer to reality.“ (Stefan Müller, Deutschlandfunk Kultur)
“In her sensitive and precise description of human behaviour during a lockdown, Friederich proves as a screenwriter why films are best when they come closest to the truth in fiction.” (Zeit.de)
“With impressive photography and authentic actors, director Lisa Charlotte Friedrich manages to grab the viewer and show in a frightening way what life in isolation might feel like.” (SR.de)
“Exciting, contemporary debut drama.” (Kino.de)
„Works like the film “live”are rare. Finally, a young filmmaker dares to take a visionary look into the digital future.“ (Barbara Grech, SR2)
„A remarkable film.“ (Kai Schmieding, SR2)
“In her debut work Lisa Charlotte Friederich proves a formidable talent for image and sound design. The dark and cool design of the sets, the camera always searching for the characters and their facial expressions, and the soundtrack that consistently gets under the skin, create an atmosphere of anxiety and constant fear. Especially the music is to be emphasized. Sometimes it is a knocking beat, sometimes a screeching trumpet and sometimes a spherical murmur, which not only dominates the filmic space, but also pushes itself into the foreground sensorially and triggers strong emotions.” (Filmlöwin.de)
“[…] The film has a lot to say and a lot to ask.” (Film-rezensionen.de)
“Friederich’s look into a not too distant future is exciting and extraordinary genre cinema from Germany. Removed from the world and at the same time frighteningly present.” (Spielfilm.de)
“In her first long feature film, Lisa Charlotte Friedrich creates an atmosphere of constant threat, displacement and desolation in gloomy, bluish-cold, often nocturnal images. […] “live” convinces […] as a courageous and accomplished film parable about possible rea-sons for the emergence of envy, hatred, discord and violence.” (Saarbrücker Zeitung)
Trailer (German with English subs)
Urs Spörri about the move “Live” (German)
A soundtrack with atmospheric electronic sounds and virtuoso trumpet sounds was created for the dystopian world of “Live“. The visionary power of the film is carried by a soundtrack with a suction effect, whose relentless beats and brilliant trumpet solos get under your skin throughout. “Live“, often referred to as the “film of the hour”, tells a world in lockdown, in which human gatherings of any kind (like concerts) are forbidden.
In 2015 they met at the Lucerne Festival and worked together for the first time as a duo for the original score of “Live“.