Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

MY COMA DREAMS Available For Free Streaming Beginning July 17

MY COMA DREAMS Available For Free Streaming Beginning July 17

Iconic pianist and composer Fred Hersch to offer free streaming of My Coma Dreams, inspired by Hersch's near-death experience beginning Friday, July 17, 2020

The acclaimed jazz theater piece was created, written and directed by Herschel Garfein and features actor/singer Michael Winther

My Coma Dreams, the extraordinary jazz theater piece based on the personal experience of Grammy-nominated pianist/composer Fred Hersch, who survived a two-month medically induced coma, will be available for free streaming beginning Friday, July 17 via YouTube. This video is best experienced with headphones or on stereo speakers.

The piece brings together original music by Hersch, "singular among trailblazers of his art" (Vanity Fair), and a script by Grammy-winning writer/director Herschel Garfein, whose "themes are deeply American, and rooted in the mores of Generations X and Y" (Time Out NY). The performance features singer/actor Michael Winther, "a theater singer of unusual refinement" with "a voice that traverses genres" (NY Times)accompanied by an 11-piece ensemble "swinging like mad." (All About Jazz).

The multimedia presentation also features animation by Sarah Wickliffe and computer imagery generated by Eamonn Farrell. The 11-piece instrumental ensemble led by Hersch includes such jazz heavyweights as drummer John Hollenbeck, bassist John Hébert, trumpeter Ralph Alessi and reed player Adam Kolker along with a string quartet featuring violinist/violist Joyce Hammann and cellist Dave Eggar. The performance was filmed with multiple cameras by videographer Ross Karre with sound design and recording by Jody Elff.


My Coma Dreams is based on eight dreams and nightmares experienced by Hersch while in a coma during the summer of 2008. Garfein shaped the dream stories into a continuous narrative that illuminates an extraordinary journey to the dividing line between life and death. Winther narrates, sings, and plays the dual roles of Fred and his partner, Scott. My Coma Dreams was originally released on DVD by Palmetto Records on November 25, 2014.

Hersch's coma experiences were also chronicled in his acclaimed 2017 memoir, "Good Things Happen Slowly," which was featured in the Sunday New York Times and on NPR's "Fresh Air," named one of 2017's Five Best Memoirs by the Washington Post and The New York Times, and acclaimed as 2018's Book on Jazz of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association.

Haunting and lyrical, at times humorous and frightening, My Coma Dreams pushes the boundary of music and theater into a realm that is deeply personal and inescapably universal. The show has earned wide critical acclaim. Jesse Hamlin of the San Francisco Chronicle calls it "a potent jazz theater piece." Dr. Judth Schlesinger in All About Jazz calls it "a searing and powerful statement about our shared humanity and the redemptive power of music and love...In a just world this is the stuff that Pulitzers are made of." Alan Young of Lucid Culture says, "...a genuinely heartwarming portrait of joie de vivre triumphing over enormous odds...literally breathtaking...powerful and compelling."

A select member of jazz's piano pantheon, Fred Hersch is a pervasively influential creative force who has shaped the music's course over more than three decades as an improviser, composer, educator, bandleader, collaborator and recording artist. He has been proclaimed "the most arrestingly innovative pianist in jazz over the last decade" by Vanity Fair, "an elegant force of musical invention" by The L.A. Times, and "a living legend" by The New Yorker.

A fifteen-time Grammy nominee, Hersch has regularly garnered jazz's most prestigious awards and has long set the standard for expressive interpretation and inventive creativity, whether through his exquisite solo performances, as the leader of one of jazz's era-defining trios, or in eloquent dialogue with his deeply attuned duo partners. His acclaimed, award-winning 2017 memoir, "Good Things Happen Slowly" (Crown Archetype Books/Random House), compellingly reveals the story of his life in music along with a frank recounting of his struggles and triumphs as the first openly gay, HIV-positive jazz musician.



Related Stories View More TV Stories
Everything You Need to Know About the WICKED Movie Photo
It's a guide to the Wicked movie. The hit Broadway musical Wicked is officially coming to the big screen! BroadwayWorld collected all the information we could about the upcoming film - including who's starring, what roles haven't yet been cast, and what will change from stage to screen.

Scoop: CALL ME KAT on FOX - Thursday, December 8, 2022 Photo
Get all the scoop on CALL ME KAT, airing on FOX on Thursday, December 8, 2022! Kat joins Max at his rock climbing gym to keep a close eye on him. Meanwhile, Carter has to spice up the bar after being excluded FROM a Christmas pub crawl in the all-new “Call Me Chrismukkah” episode. Plus, watch a video clip from a recent episode!

Scoop: WELCOME TO FLATCH on FOX - Thursday, December 8, 2022 Photo
Get all the scoop on WELCOME TO FLATCH, airing on FOX on Thursday, December 8, 2022! The Holiday Season has arrived in Flatch and Barb is getting into the Christmas spirit by holding auditions for her very own ‘Barbieshop’ quartet! Watch a video clip from a recent episode now!

Scoop: HELLS KITCHEN on FOX - Thursday, December 8, 2022 Photo
Get all the scoop on HELL'S KITCHEN, airing on FOX on Thursday, December 8, 2022! The competition get fierce when the final ten chefs compete for a grand advantage at HK Carne-Val! One chef FROM each team will go head-to-head in different carnival games to gain a major advantage in the challenge. Watch a preview video of the season now!


More Hot Stories For You


This Holiday Season, Stage Access Is 'Nutcracker Central,' With 10 Variations of Tchaikovsky's Magical MasterpieceThis Holiday Season, Stage Access Is 'Nutcracker Central,' With 10 Variations of Tchaikovsky's Magical Masterpiece
November 30, 2022

Few musical works or theatrical productions are as inextricably tied with the holidays as The Nutcracker, and to make this holiday season extra special, Stage Access – the streaming service dedicated to classical music, ballet, opera and the performing arts – is offering a dazzling array of 10 different variations on this wintertime spectacular.

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to Attend 45th Annual Kennedy Center HonorsPresident Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to Attend 45th Annual Kennedy Center Honors
November 29, 2022

President Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff will attend the 45th Kennedy Center Honors on Sunday, December 4.

Streaming Comedy Special DANIEL SLOSS: SOCIO to Be Released in DecemberStreaming Comedy Special DANIEL SLOSS: SOCIO to Be Released in December
November 27, 2022

DANIEL SLOSS: SOCIO, the new comedy special from the creator of Netflix hit shows Dark and Jigsaw, and Daniel Sloss: X will premiere on DanielSloss.com at 7pm GMT on Friday 9 December 2022. 

LOVE IN KILNERRY Now Available To Rent On Amazon And iTunesLOVE IN KILNERRY Now Available To Rent On Amazon And iTunes
November 22, 2022

Just in time for the holidays, the comedy feature LOVE IN KILNERRY is now available to rent! The film will also be available in the UK/Ireland on December 6th and debuts in Australia on January 10, 2023.

Video: Watch a Clip of Idina Menzel on CELEBRITY IOU - Airing Tonight!Video: Watch a Clip of Idina Menzel on CELEBRITY IOU - Airing Tonight!
November 21, 2022

Watch a clip of Idina Menzel with “Property Brothers” stars Drew and Jonathan Scott on HGTV's Celebrity IOU!