tue 02/03/2021

Features & Interviews

‘The Healing Power of Music’: composer Nigel Hess on great-aunt Myra’s wartime concerts

Nigel Hess

It has been well-documented over the last few months that there has been an upsurge in listener numbers for many radio stations offering classical music – notably BBC Radio 3, Classic FM and Scala Radio – and, during these unprecedented times it comes as no surprise to discover that so many people (of all ages) are finding sol

Britney Spears (1998-present): The Video Special

Thomas H Green

Interest in Britney Spears has not waned.

Disc of the Day 10th Anniversary: the level...

Joe Muggs

Theartsdesk is a labour of love. Bloody-mindedly run as a co-operative of journalists from the beginning, our obsession with maintaining a daily-...

Reviewing music off-piste: reflections on working...

Mark Kidel

Writing for theartsdesk offers a freedom that I‘ve never experienced before. Encouraged by the much-missed Sue Steward and by Peter Culshaw, two of...

Classical musicians on life after Brexit - 4:...

Nicky Spence

Forget the pandemic, it's Brexit which could ring the death knell for artists who are currently hoarse from begging to be taken seriously as a...

Classical musicians on life after Brexit - 3: violinist Sara Deborah Struntz-Timossi

Sara Deborah Struntz-Timossi

Another previously free-ranging player adds her voice to individual stories featured here

Classical musicians on life after Brexit - 2: violinist Victoria Sayles

Victoria Sayles

First sequel to pianist Sophia Rahman's assembly of musical voices on the visa situation

'The total confusion about post-Brexit rules adds to the distress': classical musicians speak out

Sophia Rahman

Ten players and administrators on the fallout in government restrictions to EU touring

'Having to establish a real conversation with the audience is a good challenge': Raffaello Morales on a possible musical future

Raffaello Morales

Pioneer of a rare 2020 success story, the Fidelio Orchestra Cafe, on adapting to change

Book extract: Fat by Hanne Blank


The multiple personalities of a public enemy, sexual fetish and essential organ

Dame Fanny Waterman (1920-2020) - some recollections, with love and affection

Adam Gatehouse

The Leeds International Piano Competition's Artstic Director remembers its founder

First Person: conductor Johannes Vogel on Beethoven’s Ninth as re-orchestrated by Mahler

Johannes Vogel

The importance of celebrating the anniversary year’s end with a bang

First Person(s): soprano Susan Bullock and baritone William Dazeley on filming Britten’s Owen Wingrave

Susan Bullock And William Dazeley

Grange Park Opera makes the most of Covid restrictions by producing a TV opera

Filmmaker Frank Marshall: 'People don’t understand what geniuses The Bee Gees were'

Owen Richards

Director of the new Bee Gees documentary discusses the brothers' legacy in music

Not-quite-solitude on the 34th floor: violinist Maxine Kwok on the short film 'Rising'

Maxine Kwok

The LSO player relates her lockdown experience in the City of London she loves so much

First Person: Avi Avital on 'Art of the Mandolin'

Avi Avital

Master of an exquisite instrument turns to works written specifically for it

‘Our whole industry is supported by vulnerable freelance creators': Chen Reiss on the artist in a time of Coronavirus

Chen Reiss

The soprano, now on screen in the Royal Opera 'Ariodante', on recognition for performers

First Person: Paul Bullock on making BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020

Paul Bullock

The BBC Young Musician executive editor on the challenges of making the competition work for TV in lockdown

Book extract: Nativity by Jean Frémon, with drawings by Louise Bourgeois


Reckoning with the question of how to represent Christ

First Person: horn player Alec Frank-Gemmill on authenticity and enlightenment in lockdown

Alec Frank-Gemmill

Treading a fine line in Brahms between historical evidence and creative freedom

First Person: Jessica Duchen on writing about Beethoven's Immortal Beloved

Jessica Duchen

Why her novel 'Immortal' became more seismic, and more relevant, than she expected

'Josquin has defined our career': The Tallis Scholars’ Peter Phillips on the end of a major recording project

Peter Phillips

Celebrating an epic on the eve of the Renaissance Mass master’s 500th anniversary

First Person: Cellist Alban Gerhardt on why concert-hall life must go on

Alban Gerhardt

The return to lockdown of German musical institutions must not happen here

Filmmaker Bassam Tariq: 'Great cinema doesn't need to be perfect - embrace the imperfections'

Owen Richards

Director of 'Mogul Mowgli' discusses taking risks, and the differences between the British- and American-Asian experience

First Person: harpsichordist Chad Kelly on reimagining Bach's Goldberg Variations

Chad Kelly

The background to what promises to be a vibrant new performance by Brecon Baroque

The Secret History of My Library: Essay by Daniel Saldaña París

Daniel Saldaña Paris

The eminent Mexican novelist on books and their ghosts

First Person: composer Brian Elias on the Music@Malling Festival's retrospective of his works

Brian Elias

Fifty years of vibrantly consistent music celebrated in rural Kent

First Person: tenor Nicky Spence on working with Blackheath locals on screen Stravinsky

Nicky Spence

'The Rake's Progress' distilled and introduced by its star and community opera patron

Book extract: Snake by Erica Wright


Short essays on a slippery object of fear, fascination and misunderstanding


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