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One of that select band of British pianists to achieve international recognition, Bernard Roberts was in constant demand as a recitalist, chamber musician, accompanist, concerto soloist and teacher. He was acclaimed by audiences and critics, the remarkable breadth of his industry bringing greater recognition for the instrument itself and proving pivotal in inspiring generations of aspiring performers.

The Tobacco Keeper, By Ali Bader

A fascinating tangle of multiple identities and forgotten histories

Tom Hodgkinson: Bring back the spirit of the troubadours!

Until two years ago I served on the committee of our local free pop festival in north Devon. Each year we would invite a bunch of bands down and throw a really fantastic party on the seafront in Lynmouth, Exmoor. This is a lovely setting for bands, with the cliffs on one side and the sea on the other. In the evening, the festival would move to the various pubs in the area and merry-making would ensue.

Album: Karl Jenkins, The Peacemakers (EMI Classics)

I've enjoyed some of Karl Jenkins's work, but this is fairly unbearable: based on texts from "peacemakers", it ends up as an all-encompassing assemblage of white-hatted do-gooders rather than a coherent piece.

Jonathan Miller says: 'I read all the time'

Cultural Life: Jonathan Miller, theatre director

Books: I read all the time. I recently read a big book on the nature of seeing and believing by Pylyshyn. I've also been re-reading a book that has been an influence on me: 'Frame Analysis' by Erving Goffman, about how we make sense of things. There's also a whole series of philosophical books by Donald Davidson – particularly 'Essays on Actions and Events' (1980). It's difficult and you need to read it again and again to get it straight. Hand movements are something I'm always thinking about when directing an opera or theatre production. I also read a very good new translation of 'Madame Bovary' by Lydia Davis.

Muhly/De Ridder/Britten Sinfonia, Barbican, London

Nico Muhly’s first work for English National Opera was an iffy affair, but he talks a blue streak, and since his collaborators include Bjork, Philip Glass, and sundry indie-rock outfits, nobody could accuse him of not putting himself about. He’s now the go-to classical composer for anyone wanting to associate themselves with cutting-edge New York cool.

Nicola Benedetti and Friends, LSO St Luke’s

Ever since she was voted BBC Young Musician of the Year, Nicola Benedetti has found ways of staying in the limelight.

Trending: But there's no time to rearrange the deckchairs...

It took 15,000 men two years to build the Titanic. I gave myself just three hours to raise the world's most famous cruise liner 100 years after its demise. My tools: A blunt craft knife; a tube of what turns out to be non-stick glue; and diminishing reserves of patience.

Bradford Cox

Trending: When handling hecklers becomes a performace

Dealing with unwanted interruptions to a stage act can turn into an elegant artform. Will Dean admires some recent examples

The bad boy of British boxing reveals how his mother's illness brought home his ignominy

Dereck Chisora: Inexcusable, embarrassing – but let me keep fighting

In his first interview since the infamous brawl with David Haye, the bad boy of British boxing reveals how his mother's illness brought home his ignominy. Alan Hubbard meets Dereck Chisora

Album: Concerto Italiano, Rinaldo Alessandrini, 1600 (Naïve)

The cusp of the 17th century was a pivotal moment in music history.

Album: The Decemberists, We All Raise Our Voices to the Air (Rough Trade)

Time and again during this 2CD live collection culled from The Decemberists' 2011 American tour, I was reminded of Arcade Fire – when I wasn't being reminded of R.E.M., of course.

Album: Dirty Three, Toward the Low Sun (Bella Union)

There's a familiar elemental tone to the Dirty Three's latest album – except this time the oceanic influence is replaced by snow and sky and rain.

Paavo Berglund: Conductor celebrated for his interpretations of Sibelius and Shostakovich

Today, a swift survey of the world's major orchestras might convey the impression that every second conductor is a Finn.

Beth Jeans Houghton and the Hooves of Destiny, Hoxton Square Bar and Kitchen, London

Beth Jeans Houghton's first EP, back in 2009, was called Hot Toast Vol 1, and she briefly looked like being, well, the toast of the nu-folk scene. Now there's a new album, Your Truly, Cellophane Nose, and she's become a bit huffy about being pigeonholed as folk. Which is understandable, as although it's got a bit of fiddle, the album also make use of military drums and trumpet, baroque arrangements, mildly irksome spoken word, sprightly pop-catchy melodies, trippy lyrics, and – most distinctly – her operatic vocals. She even plays an electric, ok?

Album: Andrew Bird, Break It Yourself (Bella Union)

Andrew Bird's characteristic lyrical blend of vagueness and verbosity is slightly reined in on Break It Yourself, though he juggles lightness and opacity as deftly as ever in songs like "Lazy Projector" and "Danse Carribe".

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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us