Friday 16 January 1998
Being a composer is a dangerous game. Look at Alkan. He died in 1888 when taking a copy of the Talmud from a bookshelf only to have the entire bookcase topple over on top of him. Two years later, the Czech composer Bohuslav Martinu (above) was born, only to spend an extraordinary childhood living in a tiny room high atop a church tower. He can't have developed much of a head for heights though because years later he fell off a balcony in Philadelphia. Happily, he survived but he never really recovered. He was astonishingly prolific, and this weekend with the BBC Symphony Orchestra is the perfect introduction encompassing symphonies, the opera The Greek Passion, the cello concerto, songs, chamber music plus three talks, a film and La Revue de Cuisine, a ballet about the wedding of a saucepan and a lid complicated by a jealous whisk.
Life & Style blogs
City traders pay £200 for a quick hangover cure
Stephen Hawking: NHS is Britain's finest public service and must be preserved from commercial interests
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
The Pirate Bay is back — but key staff have left to start a rival site
Eight-year-old girl Camilla Lisant suggests possible cancer treatment to her scientist father over the dinner table
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign
- 1 Three-year-old boy shoots pregnant mother and father in New Mexico
- 2 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 3 Jewish community urged to boycott Cornwall village after residents vote for 'Hitlers Walk' sign to be reinstated
- 4 Benedict Cumberbatch's Alan Turing gay-rights campaign snubbed by Prince William and Kate Middleton
- 5 Kim Sears responds to swearing controversy with 'parental advisory' T-shirt at Andy Murray's Australian Open final
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