Hamish Milne: reflective memories

The relationship between piano teacher and piano student can last a lifetime. When the teacher passes, inevitably, the student takes stock and reflects. Concert pianist and pedagogue Hamish Milne was a highly respected, much-loved piano professor at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where he taught for over forty years. He died earlier this…

Words and Music with Lucy Parham and Friends

British concert pianist Lucy Parham came to prominence when she won the piano final of the BBC Young Musician of the Year in 1984, and  has since played with many of the world’s finest orchestras and conductors. More recently, she has become synonymous with performances of Words and Music. Lucy teams up with eminent actors, and themes…

Barry Douglas in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

The thirty-ninth interview in my Classical Conversations Series features Irish concert pianist Barry Douglas. We met for a chat in London recently, where he talked about his life and career. Barry Douglas has established a major international career since winning the Gold Medal at the 1986 Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition, Moscow. As Artistic Director of…

Cristina Ortiz in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

My thirty-eighth interview guest is Brazilian concert pianist Cristina Ortiz. We met at her home in West London a couple of weeks ago to discuss her life and career. Even though Cristina has been resident in Europe for many years, it is the passion, spontaneity and allure so characteristic to her Brazilian cultural heritage, which…

Nicholas McCarthy in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

My Classical Conversations Series continues today and features British left-handed concert pianist Nicholas McCarthy, who is my thirty-seventh guest. He met with me earlier this month at Steinway Hall in London. Nicholas was born in 1989 without his right hand and only began to play the piano at the late age of 14 after seeing…

Leslie Howard in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

The thirty-sixth interview in my Classical Conversations Series features British concert pianist and Liszt specialist Leslie Howard. I met him at his home earlier this month for a most interesting chat. Renowned concert pianist Leslie Howard has given recitals and concerto performances all over the world. His repertoire embraces the whole gamut of the piano…

Martin James Bartlett in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

The thirty fourth interview guest in my Classical Conversations Series is BBC Young Musician 2014, Martin James Bartlett. Martin is a student at the Royal College of Music Junior Department and is about to start an undergraduate degree at the RCM Senior Department in September, where he will study with Professor Vanessa Latarche. We met up…

Ian Fountain in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

The thirty-third Classical Conversation in my series features British concert pianist Ian Fountain. We chatted at the Royal Academy of Music earlier this month, where Ian is professor of piano. In 1989 Ian Fountain became the youngest winner of the Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Masters Competition in Tel Aviv at the age of 19. He…

Hamish Milne in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

The thirty-second Classical Conversation features British concert pianist and professor of piano at the Royal Academy of Music, Hamish Milne. We met last month at Jaques Samuel Pianos in London to chat about his life and work. Hamish has appeared as soloist with most of the leading British orchestras and has given over two hundred broadcasts…

Artur Pizarro in conversation with Melanie Spanswick

My twenty-ninth Classical Conversation features Portuguese concert pianist Artur Pizarro. We met recently at Blüthner Pianos in London to chat about his life and career. Born in Lisbon, Portugal in 1968, Artur Pizarro gave his first public performance at the age of three and made his television début on Portuguese television at the age of four….