Gael Garcia Bernal on ‘Mozart in the Jungle,’ winning Golden Globes and the problem with genius


Gael Garcia Bernal says he was flabbergasted when he and “Mozart in the Jungle” pulled off upsets at the Golden Globes for Best Comedy Actor and Series earlier this year.

“It was amazing,” he says in our audio chat. Listen to the full interview above. “At the moment when you win, you go back in your mind to where things started. It’s as simple as remembering the first day of the shoot. It was an experiment and an adventure that sounded very exciting. You never think that it’s going to have that resonance.”

But now that the the Amazon program pulled off those Globe victories, he says, “The wins give the series and my character of Rodrigo new life.”

Rodrigo is the fish-out-of-water conductor of the New York Symphony – a young, dashing genius who disrupts the staid music establishment when he takes over the baton from a conservative old maestro. Part of Rodrigo’s daily conflict on the job is cultural – he’s from Mexico – and part is generational: he champions new artistic ideas that are not always eagerly accepted.

“He lives the frustration that he can be a master of music in his job, but outside, in his life, he cannot control things,” Bernal says. “And that is an interesting problematic thing that happens to all geniuses in whatever they do.”

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