Escaping Netflix

That is Alma Mahler in the photo. In July 1940 she fled from unoccupied Marseille in France across the Pyrenees to neutral Spain in an escape masterminded by American Varian Fry's Emergency Rescue Committee. She escaped with the Czech writer Franz Werfel , and in her luggage were several Mahler manuscripts, among them Das Lied von der Erde and the the score of the first three movements of Bruckner's Third Symphony. 

Netflix docudramas are not my thing. But I watched the first episode of the strangely titled Transatlantic as I am familiar with the story of Varian Fry on which the series is very, very, very loosely based. I will say no more about Transatlantic, except that I won't be watching the other five episodes. 

For those who prefer the facts over screen bait, there are two Overgrown Path posts about the Varian Fry era. Walking the walk with Alma Mahler recounts my retracing of the route taken by Varian Fry's escapees, and Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction is my tribute to Walter Benjamin - the subject of some really dreadful ham acting in the Netflix series - after visiting his memorial in the town where he died after failing to cross the border. Sorry, but unlike Transatlantic, there is no nudity, clandestine affairs or gay liaisons in my posts.


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