Carole Blueweiss

Left Alone Rhapsody: Behind the Lens With Filmmaker Stewart Schulman

Episode Summary

In this conversation with filmmaker and self-described Renaissance Man Stewart Schulman, we discuss his multifaceted career and his collaborations with John Bayless, highlighting projects like One Hand One Heart and the award-winning feature documentary Left Alone Rhapsody: The Musical Memoir of Pianist John Bayless. Schulman shares  Bayless’ life from childhood illness and genius piano playing at age four to Julliard as Leonard Bernstein’s protege; from his Baptist upbringing to conversion to Judaism; and from playing the piano around the world as a Steinway then Yamaha artist with two hands to his re-invented life post-stroke re-learning to play the piano with his non-dominant left hand.  Stewart’s stories about his life and the filmmaking process are delightfully accented by John’s music and one-man show, One Hand One Heart.  I hope this episode (and John Bayless episode!) inspires you to see the fabulous film, Left Alone Rhapsody.

About Stewart Schulman

I love stories. Watching them.  Telling them. They’re journeys that open our minds—our hearts—and show us new ways of thinking.  

I aim for my work to be entertaining and socially relevant—challenging perceptions and inspiring ‘change’.  It’s how we grow.  

People I work with have called me a “Renaissance Man”—because I’ve explored many different creative mediums to broaden my skills as a writer, director and producer. They also tell me I bring an even-keeled temperament to the table, keep my work environments professional and enjoyable, and get the job done right.    

Contact me with questions.  I look forward to working with you in the future.

Act Two MediaWorks

From This Episode

Left Alone Rhapsody: The Musical Memoir of Pianist John Bayless

  • Watch the trailer for Left Alone Rhapsody.
  • Watch at Reel Abilities Film Festival in New York City on April 4th, with a live performance by John Bayless on April 8th Free Tickets Here
  • Watch at the Sarasota Film Festival on April 10th Tickets Here
  • Watch at the Jewish Film Festival of Pittsburgh on May 2nd, with a live performance by John Bayless Tickets Here
  • Watch the Long Island Premiere on May 9th at the Jeanne Rimsky Theater , with a live performance by John Bayless

John Bayless – One Hand One Heart: My Life & My Music This new ‘one-man-one-hand only’ play—with music by Gershwin, Bernstein, Puccini, Mancini, Rachmaninoff, Rodgers, Legrand and the world-renowned concert pianist, John Bayless, himself—takes audiences on the journey of John’s remarkable life. John talks openly about his highs and lows, and his determination to create a second act for himself as an artist.

The play begins with a 4-year-old John becoming a musical prodigy in his hometown of Borger, Texas, which sets him on a life-long adventure and a 30-year career as a concert pianist, which is suddenly halted by a debilitating stroke. John shares the “hell” he faced, post-stroke, trying desperately to journey back to life  to be an artist in a new way. His spiritual awakening led him to his unbelievable comeback, concertizing with his left hand all alone!  This inspiring one-man show evokes laughter and tears, showcasing John’s astonishing musicianship, as he shares his amazing life-story.

Music featured in the episode:

  • That’s It! composed by John Bayless  with Robert Freedman, featured in One Hand One Heart
  • Winter Tableau  composed by John Bayless, used in collaboration with choreographer Heidi Latsky
  • Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin, reimagined for one hand by John Bayless

Heidi Latsky Dance

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  • Audio Engineering by Steve Heatherington of Good Podcasting Works
  • Co-Producer and Marketing Coordinator: Kayla Nelson
  • Production Assistant: Becki Leigh

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