At the June 2009 Washington State Music Teacher Association Conference, Ingrid was our guest speaker. I was impressed with how she was able to engage the students, the teachers, and the audience in a way I have not seen before. We all were in awe of her energy, humor, and personality. My admiration for her was magnified when I learned that she had suffered a major stroke just two years before.
She demonstrated the music with another pianist playing the left hand and they were fabulous together. There wasn't a sound in the auditorium as a personal letter of appreciation from a parent was read describing one of Ingrid's amazing master classes. And when the reader was done, the audience jumped to its feet cheering in celebration of Ingrid's music and her life. Watching Ingrid teach was so much fun. Not only did her disability not take anything away from what she does, it is even more powerful when we think about how much she has overcome.
Since I was a child, I have always been fascinated by great stories in films, Ingrid’s story gave me the inspiration I needed to begin. When I contacted her and explained what I wanted to do, she asked: “What films have you done before?” I replied that this would be my first. “That’s crazy,” she said. My retort: “The only way to know how to do something is to do it.” Always the teacher, Ingrid said: “Absolutely.”
My first interview with Ingrid was in Lafayette, Louisiana. We also shot in Seattle, Albuquerque, Portland, and Princeton. This film happened because this is a great story. I hope this film will help to inspire people to share the strength, passion and love for life that Ingrid symbolizes.
TAKE A BOW is the extraordinary life story of Ingrid Clarfield, a remarkable music educator and highly respected Professor of Piano at Westminster Choir College at Rider University in Princeton, New Jersey. Ingrid has traveled the country giving hundreds of workshops and lectures, inspiring thousands of music students and teachers from coast to coast.
On March 29 2007, after returning from the Music Teacher National Association conference in Toronto, Ingrid was stuck down by a devastating stroke that paralyzed the left side of her body. This should have been the end of her career. But, it wasn't. The film depicts how Ingrid's love for piano, passion for teaching and dedication to her students allowed her to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds.
The film takes an intimate look into Ingrid's childhood; her musical gifts; and the support of her family, colleagues, and students. TAKE A BOW inspires with its insight into Ingrid's struggle and the sheer determination it took for her to become a champion in the end.
“Why are you making this film?” It is a question I am asked all the time. My answer is always the same: “If you saw Ingrid in action. You would know this is a story worth telling!”