Classical music

The serried ranks of an El Sistema youth orchestra in Caracas, 2012 — a ‘miracle’ that’s turned very sour

Sex, lies and El Sistema

6 December 2014 9:00 am

An explosive new book uncovers abuse at the heart of one of classical music’s most revered institutions. Damian Thompson investigates

Why Church music is back in vogue - and squeaky-gate music has had its day

6 December 2014 9:00 am

One of the growth areas of contemporary music is in setting sacred texts. It might be thought that I had…

Forget the Germans. It’s the French who made classical music what it is

6 December 2014 9:00 am

The poor French. When we think of classical music, we always think of the Germans. It’s understandable. Instinctive. Ingrained. But…

Is this 65-year-old British pianist the next big thing in classical music?

29 November 2014 9:00 am

Earlier this month the Wigmore Hall was sold out for a Schubert recital by a concert pianist whose only solo…

The drunk conductor who ruined Rachmaninov’s career

18 October 2014 9:00 am

Would musical history have turned out differently if Alexander Glazunov hadn’t been smashed out of his wits when he conducted…

Christopher Hogwood: the absolutist of early music

4 October 2014 9:00 am

The death of Christopher Hogwood has deprived the world of the most successful exponent of early music there has ever…

Wedding music lives or dies at the hands of the organist

20 September 2014 9:00 am

A few weeks ago I was at the perfect wedding. My young friend Will Heaven, a comment editor at the…

The Spectator's Notes: French presidents used to have a touch of the monarch. Not any more

18 January 2014 9:00 am

When I interviewed Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, the former president of France, for my biography of Margaret Thatcher, I asked him…

Anthony Horowitz's notebook: Have our schools lost all faith in culture?

14 December 2013 9:00 am

Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, the Master of the Queen’s Music, recently wrote about the almost total ignorance of young people…

Why do we pounce on Wagner's anti-Semitism, and ignore that of the Russian composers?

9 November 2013 9:00 am

Philip Hensher on how an impassioned, chaotic group of amateur 19th-century composers created the first distinctively Russian music

'I was an arrogant 18-year-old': Daniel Harding on growing up

2 November 2013 9:00 am

Michael Henderson talks to the youthful conductor Daniel Harding, who realises that the older he gets the more he has to learn

How to conduct a Tallis motet in a cardboard cathedral

2 November 2013 9:00 am

To undertake a concert tour of New Zealand’s cathedrals at the moment is to be constantly reminded of the destructive…