After a hard day’s work, there’s nothing like going into flop mode, a glass of something in one hand, the other gently rifling through ranks of CDs or scrolling through a digital cache of music, finding the escape hatch from … Read More →


Easter extensions

The account of the birth of Christianity as depicted through the life of Jesus some 2,000 years ago has been celebrated for centuries through masterpieces of the Western European classical music tradition. Formats include the Passion, the Stabat Mater and … Read More →



In his celebrated novel, Jules Verne took his readers Around the World in Eighty Days. Today, I wondered if we could perform a similar feat with a handful of classical compositions, namely those that feature a country’s capital city in … Read More →


Podcast: Poetry for the departed

At its première in June 1969 Shostakovich described his Symphony No. 14, in effect a symphonic song cycle, as ‘a fight for the liberation of humanity… a great protest against death, a reminder to live one’s life honestly, decently, nobly…’ … Read More →


Who’s afraid of new music…?

Think about the last time you went into an art gallery. It’s pretty certain you won’t have liked all of the modern paintings, but I would be prepared to bet there was at least one which impressed and stuck in … Read More →