The Ballad of Fred Hersch is an intimate portrait of one of today’s foremost jazz pianists. With more than 30 albums and 10 Grammy nominations, Hersch is internationally revered in jazz circles as a master improviser. A maverick in music and in life, he was the first jazz musician to come out as gay and HIV-positive in the early 1990s, and he miraculously survived a two-month coma in 2008. Both exacting and full of love, our unfettered cameras capture Hersch’s creative process as he does double duty as a workaday jazzman and first-time theater producer—turning his tragedies into triumphal art.


Online Streaming 

THE BALLAD OF FRED HERSCH is available for HOME USE ONLY via Video On Demand (VOD) on Vimeo.


RSI, Swiss Italian TV
Starting March 10, 2019

Upcoming Screenings

August 22, 2019 – Charlie Parker Festival, followed by Q&A with filmmakers
Maysles Documentary Center, New York, NY – 7pm

April 16, 2020 – Library of Congress, Washington, DC (Details to follow)

Past Screenings

Host a Screening

THE BALLAD OF FRED HERSCH is available for screenings at festivals, community centers, schools, conferences and organizations. Contact us to host a screening.

Good Things Happen Slowly

Check Fred’s memoir GOOD THINGS HAPPEN SLOWLY. Order your copy of the book now.


“This is one not to miss.” – INDY News

“The Ballad of Fred Hersch operates with much the same logic as a jazz session, […] any audience can appreciate its simple honesty, bravery, and beauty” – Unseen Films



10 Essential Arts and Culture Documentaries at DOCNYC | Stage Buddy | November 14, 2016

DOC NYC 2016 Women Directors: Meet Carrie Lozano and Charlotte Lagarde |Women and Hollywood | November 11, 2016

Nathanael Hood on The Ballad of Fred Hersch | Unseen Films | November 9, 2016

Four Full Frame Films Highlight the Heteronormative Pressures LGBTQ People Face Around the World | INDY News | April 6, 2016

Video Q&A after premiere “The Ballad of Fred Hersch” at DOC NYC 2016 with Fred Hersch, Charlotte Lagarde and Carrie Lozano

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