In Saraband, Marianne and Johan meet again after thirty years without contact, when Marianne suddenly feels a need to see her ex-husband again. She decides to visit Johan at his old summer house in the western province of Dalarna. And so, one beautiful autumn day, there she is, beside his reclining chair, waking him with a light kiss.
Also living at the summer house are Johan’s son Henrik and Henrik’s daughter Karin. Henrik is giving his daughter cello lessons and already sees her future as staked out. Relations between father and son are very strained, but both are protective of Karin. They are all still mourning Anna, Henrik’s much-loved wife, who died two yearsago, yet who, in many ways, remains present among them. Marianne soon realizes that things are not all as they should be, and she finds herself unwillingly drawn into a complicated and upsetting power struggle.
“Saraband can be seen as a concerto grosso, a concert for full orchestra — only, here, with four soloists,” says Ingmar Bergman. “The drama consists of ten dialogues that follow a particular pattern, and it’s an attempt at analysis of a difficult situation.”
A saraband was an erotic dance for two that was very popular at royal courts in the 17th and 18th centuries. But it was prohibited in Spain as being indecent. Saraband was shot at SVT in the autumn of 2002, with the latest HD technology, both in-studio and on location.