Is Elliot Page really playing the violin in The Umbrella Academy?

23 June 2022, 09:06

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

The new mind-bending Netflix original ‘The Umbrella Academy’ features Canadian actor Elliot Page on a violin – but is he really playing it?

Based on an American comic book series, The Umbrella Academy is Netflix’s original series about a family of superheroes.

Elliot Page stars as Vanya Hargreeves (later Viktor Hargreeves), one of seven foster siblings who were all born under mysterious circumstances and adopted as infants.

Although Page plays a character who has no superhero abilities, the actor learned possibly the most impressive skill of all: playing the violin.

“For me on a personal level, I have to say this is one of my favourite characters I’ve ever gotten to play,” Page told USA Today.

Elliot Page plays the violin as Vanya Hargreeves in season 1 of The Umbrella Academy.
Elliot Page plays the violin as Vanya Hargreeves in season 1 of The Umbrella Academy. Picture: Netflix

In the first series, Vanya, an aspiring violinist who is stuck at the back of her orchestra’s violin section, finds her voice and finally has a professional break-through.

Page just about moves his bow up and down in the right places – but most of his playing is dubbed by a young violinist. “She’s a 16-year-old prodigy named Imogen. It was a gift to listen to her play. I definitely know the stuff that doesn’t look as good.”

The violinist is Imogen Sloss, a young Canadian musician who won a first-place trophy at the 2017 Ontario Music Festivals Association (OMFA).

Read more: 10 actors who learned a musical instrument for films

Having never picked up a violin before, Page took a few lessons for authenticity’s sake.

“I did my absolute best and had a wonderful, patient teacher. It is so hard. So hard. Really, the goal was to just try and make me look as comfortable as humanly possible.”

Page’s bowing isn’t perfect, but he has a fair go at it and even shows off a touch of vibrato in the left hand.

In the trailer for The Umbrella Academy, 43 women around the world mysteriously give birth on the same day… but none of them were pregnant that morning.

The first episode begins 17 years later, as six young superheroes born on that day reunite after their adoptive father dies, and they are faced with the daunting task of saving the world in eight days.

The Umbrella Academy is available to watch on Netflix.