Skip to main content




Dir. Maggie Contreras
88 min

From Spellbound to last year’s Pianoforte, documentaries about competitions and their competitors are naturally engaging. Following the buzz surrounding the Leonard Bernstein bio-pic Maestro, the informative Maestra is even more compelling. It profiles five fiercely tenacious female orchestra conductors in the early stages of their careers who participate in France’s “La Maestra.” Among the competitors are Melisse Brunet, a French woman teaching at the University of Iowa; American Tamara Dworetz who wants work and family and wonders how to combine the two; Greek Zoe Zeniodi, a single mother of two; Ukrainian Ustina Dubitsky and the young Pole, Anna Sulkowska-Mignon. On the human-interest side, the women relate their problems with balancing work, family and constant travel, and with sexism and stress. The competition judges include Marin Alsop, one of the most prominent female conductors working today, as well as Deborah Borda, former St. Paul Chamber Orchestra President and Managing Director. –Alissa Simon

Film Details

Release Year: 2023
Runtime: 88 min
Country/Region: USA
Language: English, French, Greek
Tags: Arts, Documentary, Music, Women, Women Directors


Director: Maggie Contreras
Executive Producer: David Letterman, Tom Keaney, Jonathan Ginns, Jamie Wolf, Nathalie Seaver, Diane Becker
Producer: Maggie Contreras, Neil Berkeley, Emma West, Melanie Miller, Lauren Lexton
Cinematographer: Neil Berkeley, Olympia Mytilinaiou, Isabelle Razavet, Patrick Bolton
Editor: Elisa Bonora, Finola Couling, Rupert Hall
Composer: Anne Chmelewsky