Are proud to present for SIMFEST’s 20th edition a unique music documentary to mark the 110th anniversary of birth of the legendary conductor Constantin Silvestri (Bucharest 1913 – London 1969)


A film in 7 episodes produced in London by pianist Anda Anastasescu and film director-editor Nicolas Gaster: Prelude, Lead soldiers, The little shepherd, Fireworks, Pictures at an exhibition, Nocturne, Bacchanalia.

The film reveals the trajectory of Silvestri’s life, his personality, his despairs and triumphs, his miraculous music making and his outstanding talent for composition. This year, the film received laurels and the title of Best Documentary for its originality and excellence by festivals in New York, UK, France, Italy, Sweden, Croatia and Georgia.

Anda Anastasescu, artistic director of the London Schubert Players, is a Commander of the Order of Cultural Merit in Romania and a European Women of Achievement laureate in the arts in Great Britain. She won First Prize and the Grand Prix in the Debussy International Competition, Paris 1974, which opened the way to a distinguished and multi-faceted career on five continents. Antoine Goléa, the Doyen of French music critics wrote about her: “Yet another pianist” you may think. No, of this calibre the world can never have enough.’ Silvestri became her hero in 1990 in the aftermath of the Romanian Revolution. Together with her husband, journalist and Silvestri’s biographer, John Gritten, she created significant international projects in Silvestri’s memory. She has lived in London since 1972.

‘Fifty years ago, destiny chose to make me become a Romanian exile in London. The feeling of empathy of one exile to another is a very special thing. Only THEY know what it is to miss your country of birth and be separated indefinitely from the people you love and from a past which defined your personality and achievements. Even more tragic when life deserts the exile in hospital in an unfamiliar city at the age of 55, just when he was at a turning point towards universal fame. The pandemic gave me a helping hand to go beyond my profession of concert pianist and transform myself into a film producer, script writer, music editor and presenter’. Anda Anastasescu

Nicolas Gaster is a well known British film editor. He worked with directors of the calibre of Lindsay Anderson, Peter Brook, Roger Mitchell, Milcho Manchevski and Ralph Fiennes, in celebrated productions with eminent actors such as Bette Davis, Peter O’Toole, Michel Piccoli, Colin Firth, Kate Winslet, John Malkovitch and Ben Daniels.

”I was delighted to direct, co-produce and edit this film in memory of my grandfather Moses Gaster, the distinguished Romanian linguist and Honorary Member of the Romanian Academy, born in Bucharest in 1856.” – say Nicolas Gaster