Vick Bain Interview

Murray McLachlan in conversation with Vick Bain – the creator of The F-List for Music, an advocate and campaigner for equality and diversity in the music industry with over 25 years of experience in the business. Vick has been enrolled into the Music Week Women in Music Awards Roll Of Honour, featured in BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour Music Powerlist and raised an important question on BBC World News + BBC One TV: “Why are there no women nominated for best artist in Brit Awards 2023?” Read more >

ABRSM Pop Performer! Review

Motivation in the preliminary stages of learning to play an instrument can often be given more than an initial kick-start or impetus if the repertoire is chosen that the pupil loves and is really keen to play. If a student is a great fan of ABBA, then it makes sense that he/she would be really thrilled to be able to play one of their top hits by themselves. Read more >

Why facial expressions matter?

We live in a most visually conscious age. Young musicians in the 21st century could be forgiven for assuming that image is everything. Instagram, TikTok, ‘my story,’ and YouTube …

All provide instantaneous imagery, giving the immediate communicative impact that, for certain ‘influencers,’ can extend to a global scale. Concerts and competitions are live-streamed, meaning that virtual audiences can come and go as they please. Read more >

Andrew Eales Interview

Andrew is one of the most versatile, energised, and talented figures in music education today. His superb blog Pianodao was launched in 2015 and continues to attract enormous interest, with an international following for its extensive range of articles and reviews. Ranked the number one piano education blog worldwide for three successive years, it is a bastion of support, insight and inspiration for piano teachers and players.  Read more >

Donald Thomson Interview

Scottish composer Donald Thomson: Edinburgh’s ebullient, energised enthusiast in conversation with Murray McLachlan.

Please forgive my over-alliterative heading for this piece on Donald, a wonderful individual who, though not strictly from Edinburgh (he actually lives in East Lothian!) most certainly exudes positive, ‘can do’ energy. Indeed, everything about Donald reflects on his sincerity and warmth. Here is a bubbling, vibrant, musician who may have only recently had compositions of his own published, but who has had a lifetime’s love of music from which to springboard creatively from.  Alongside his remarkably prolific productivity and compositional successes over the past decade, Donald has continued to work on all cylinders as a pianist, in music education, and also in publishing. His extraordinary multi-faceted energy and endeavours seem to make him three or four individuals in one! Read more >

Review – Graded Pieces for Piano by William Gillock, Edited by Andrew Eales

In the UK Gillock is especially loved for a handful of memorable miniatures that regularly appear on set repertoire lists for grade examinations. ‘New Orleans Nightfall’ in particular has proved to be an outstandingly popular choice for grade five candidates, though ‘Mister Trumpet Man’ and ‘Carnival in Rio’ are also firmly established as frequent choices for young players at festivals, concerts, and exams. Read more >

Musical Utopia in Gümüşlük

Over the years, Kathryn and I have attended many excellent summer schools and festivals. We adore the spirit, motivation, concept, and delivery of summer music making in all kinds of contexts and locations- it is pure joy to take music to new places and share it with others. To be a professional musician on the faculty of a summer course is to let go of paperwork, day to day chores and focus exclusively on creativity… with time off each day for leisure and socialising with new friends and colleagues. Read more >

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