Alan Rusbridger speaker/piano

As a boy the Guardian newspaper’s editor, Alan Rusbridger, was ’a cathedral chorister, a reasonable orchestral clarinettist and a very mediocre pianist’. In his late 40s he restarted piano lessons and tried to make up for more than 30 years of missing technique. Since then, he has moved from ‘very mediocre’ to ‘mediocre’.

In this event, he discusses with BBC Radio 3’s Suzy Klein his recent attempt to learn, in the space of a year, Chopin’s fearsomely difficult Ballade No 1 – and how this pianistic challenge coincided with momentous events in his day job: the Arab Spring, the Japanese tsunami, WikiLeaks and the phone hacking scandal. New Yorker critic Alex Ross has described his resulting book, Play it Again, as a ‘dazzling, dizzying memoir’, the result of ‘a wide-awake, fearless mind’


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