Hear more. Feel more. Be more!

Come with me and dive into some great classical music. For over 1000 years great musicians have explored what it means to live, love, die and everything in between: asking all our deep and universal questions. Escape the cacophony – the noise of your brain and daily life; tune into the music, your feelings and emotions ‘good’ and ‘bad’ … and find the space, stillness and love that underpins everything.

NB: May include loud noise, surprises, challenges, cacophonous racket May cause shock, comfort, discomfort, smiles, tears, peace, transcendence

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136. Where the walls of heaven are thin as a curtain: Simon Clark on Talbot, Path of Miracles

An epic and spiritual adventure for choir, Joby Talbot’s Path of Miracles captures the hope, the expectation and the moments of overwhelm (both positive and negative) of travellers on the ancient and still popular pilgrimage trail the Camino de Santiago (Way of St James).

Simon Clark, scientist, author and singer joins me to share his passion for the piece and guide us on a journey of musical and maybe spiritual fulfilment! Listening time: podcast 24 mins, music 62’… Listen

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135. Uplifting melancholy and passionate languor: Granados Spanish Dances

Music that seems to conjure all the tastes, smells and senses of Spain – or my expectations of them (as someone who’s hardly been there): Spanish dances for piano by Enrique Granados. Perfect music if you just want to feel warmer, but it’s also an opportunity to bask (Basque? [sorry]) in some gloriously wistful melancholy that seems to underpin all six of these pieces. Somehow it’s not a melancholy that makes one feel sad – it seems as uplifting and nourishing as the warm sun on a cold winter’s day. Listening time: podcast 12 mins; music 25′.… Listen

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Not the World Cup of (largely) classical music: revisited! Highlights and talking points

Not the World Cup was a “glorious celebration of classical and world music” that ran alongside a small men’s football competition in late 2022.
I got together with my friend the conductor and writer Lev Parikian to pick some highlights and talk about a few of the things we learnt – about music, about how we listen and how it makes us feel. (41 mins.)… Listen

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134. The sound of the solar system? Kepler: Harmony of the World

An extraordinary, ambitious, blend of art and science, Johanes Kepler’s Harmony of the World is a 17th century attempt to understand what the then known universe sounded like – on a planetary level! In the 1970s, using the latest technology professors Willie Ruff and John Rodgers were able to make Kepler’s Harmony into music – an extended piece of electronica, hypnotic and thought provoking. (25’+ listening time)… Listen

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133. A woman on the money: Clara Schumann, Piano Trio

Urbane sophistication mixes with poetry and drama in Clara Schumann’s Piano Trio, her biggest piece from a small catalogue of great music. Better known in recent times as the wife of Robert Schumann, it was Clara who was an international star as the leading pianist of their day. It was composing, though, that brought her the greatest joy and her music is full of deep inspiration and honesty. Listening time … Listen

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