Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

A moment of visibility

Posted by Susan Tomes on 23 May 2016 under Daily Life, Musings  •  3 Comments

At the weekend I had an unusual experience. Following the conclusion of BBC Young Musician and viewers’ anger that the result was so under-reported, I wrote a letter to The Guardian about the wider issue. We’ve heard a lot recently about orchestras folding, opera companies struggling, and arts companies disappearing as their funding dries up. Within the profession there’s […]




My letter in today’s Guardian

Posted by Susan Tomes on 21 May 2016 under Daily Life, Inspirations, Musings, Teaching  •  6 Comments

In today’s Guardian I have a letter which aroused quite a lot of interest when it appeared online yesterday. Please share it if you agree. Here’s what I said: ‘Much of the recent discourse around classical music and its troubles has contained a subtext of glee at the notion that a privileged class is getting […]




Battle of repertoire

Posted by Susan Tomes on 16 May 2016 under Concerts, Musings  •  5 Comments

BBC Young Musician came to a close last night with the wonderful young cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason being declared the winner after his remarkably mature and thoughtful performance of Shostakovich’s first cello concerto.  His charming, modest response on being asked how he felt about winning will have endeared him to many. Much as I admired his […]




BBC Young Musician’s ‘accs’

Posted by Susan Tomes on 7 May 2016 under Concerts, Musings, Teaching  •  7 Comments

BBC Young Musician is underway on BBC4, and once again the talent and accomplishment of the young players is absolutely admirable. To watch and listen to them is inspiring and gives one great hope for the next generation of classical musicians. Having said that, I am still vexed by the way that the collaborative pianists are […]




Precision drifting

Posted by Susan Tomes on 4 May 2016 under Inspirations, Musings, Travel  •  Leave a comment

Last week I was in Rome, where I walked into a church one day to hear a group of about twenty nuns chanting an evening service. (I say ‘chanting’ because it wasn’t exactly singing, nor was it exactly speaking, but some melodious hybrid of the two.) There was a small group at the front who sang […]




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