Julian Schnabel, an all-round artist – painter, sculptor, film director – among other things, and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, and St. Ann’s Warehouse (the New York City venue that had previously co-commissioned Songs for Drella), has just made a film of the live presentation of famed Lou Reed album Berlin, available for free online.
As Open Culture reports, in 2006, Reed took centerstage in Brooklyn for a 5-night theatrical run of Berlin that also featured a 35-piece ensemble, original guitarist Steve Hunter, and dreamy videos by the director’s daughter, Lola, starring Emmanuelle Seigner as an abstract sketch of the doomed protagonist, Caroline.
The resulting concert film, which St. Ann’s Warehouse is streaming for free through November 29, proved far more popular with critics than the 1973 record had been (three years prior to the St. Ann’s staging, Rolling Stone upgraded its original opinion of the album from career-ending disaster to 344th Greatest Album of All Time).
They also note that Stephen Holden’s glowing New York Times review of the film made multiple mentions of angels and demons, as is perhaps to be expected when a work combines Lou Reed, a Sid and Nancy-ish romance, a children’s choir, and the ethereal voice of Anohni, late of Antony and the Johnsons.
You can stream Julian Schnabel’s Lou Reed’s Berlin, Live at St. Ann’s Warehouse here through November 29, 2020.