Journeys With My Violin

Episodes

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01The Music20210207Tasmin Little is a violinist who has been thrilling audiences around the world for more than 30 years. From tiny recital venues to the grandest of concert halls, her aim has been to share her excitement in the power of music with as many people as possible.

In May 2019 Tasmin began what she thought was going to be a carefully structured countdown to retirement, leading towards a groundbreaking recital at London’s South Bank centre just over a year later. She began a diary to reflect on this final part of her musical journey, but a serious finger injury and the global pandemic ended up making her path far from predictable.

Eventually on 22nd December 2020, she gave her last concert and in early January this year she said goodbye to her precious Guadagnini violin - her companion for three decades.

Over the course of three programmes Tasmin dips into her personal concert diary, remembering the pieces that drew her to the violin, the places she took it to, and the people who joined her on those many and varied journeys.

In the first episode of her series Tasmin takes us on a tour of some of the repertoire that intrigued her as a young player, from the concerto she insisted on playing in a competition (even though she knew it wouldn’t gain her the first prize), to a demanding piece by Locatelli in the hands of German violinist Suzanne Lautenbacher.

Tasmin remembers how her project The Naked Violin began, with its aim of allowing anyone to try classical music free of charge. And she thinks about the way her attitude towards playing Bach has gradually altered over the years.

Plus she describes how playing Brahms’ Violin Concerto can be a battle or a joy (and sometimes both).

A Tandem Production for BBC Radio 3

Violinist Tasmin Little reflects on a glittering solo career.

02The Places20210214Tasmin Little is a violinist who has been thrilling audiences around the world for more than 30 years. From tiny recital venues to the grandest of concert halls, her aim has been to share her excitement in the power of music with as many people as possible.

In May 2019 Tasmin began what she thought was going to be a carefully structured countdown to retirement, leading towards a groundbreaking recital at London’s South Bank centre just over a year later. She began a diary to reflect on this final part of her musical journey, but a serious finger injury and the global pandemic ended up making her path far from predictable.

Eventually on 22nd December 2020, she gave her last concert and in early January this year she said goodbye to her precious Guadagnini violin - her companion for three decades.

Over the course of three programmes Tasmin dips into her personal concert diary, remembering the pieces that drew her to the violin, the places she took it to, and the people who joined her on those many and varied journeys.

Episode two finds her looking back at various places that have echoed with the sound of her performances. She remembers travelling to Belgium as a 16-year-old and suddenly finding herself leading a symphony orchestra; the feeling of walking on stage at the Royal Albert Hall to play Vaughan Williams’ The Lark Ascending at the BBC Proms; and losing her suitcase of concert clothes while on tour behind the Iron Curtain.

Tasmin also explores some of the key pieces that she has performed with collaborators all over the world, including Walton’s Violin Concerto and Beethoven’s Kreutzer Sonata, and remembers the challenges of playing outdoors in front of 40,000 people at Proms in the Park.

A Tandem Production for BBC Radio 3

Violinist Tasmin Little reflects on a glittering solo career.

03The People20210221Tasmin Little is a violinist who has been thrilling audiences around the world for more than 30 years. From tiny recital venues to the grandest of concert halls, her aim has been to share her excitement in the power of music with as many people as possible.

In May 2019 Tasmin began what she thought was going to be a carefully structured countdown to retirement, leading towards a groundbreaking recital at London’s South Bank centre just over a year later. She began a diary to reflect on this final part of her musical journey, but a serious finger injury and the global pandemic ended up making her path far from predictable.

Eventually on 22nd December 2020, she gave her last concert and in early January this year she said goodbye to her precious Guadagnini violin - her companion for three decades.

In the final episode of her series, Tasmin remembers the many musicians she has collaborated with across three decades as a soloist. She has had close working relationships with not one, but four pianists: Piers Lane, John Lenehan and Martin Roscoe have shared the concert platform with her for many years, and more recently she found an exciting new partnership with the young Russian pianist Andrey Gugnin.

She also thinks about some of the other people who've inspired her, for instance Itzhak Perlman and his ‘scrumptious’ sonority of tone, and the dozens of conductors she has worked with, from Sir Simon Rattle to Vladimir Ashkenazy and Sir Andrew Davis.

And listening again to a beloved concerto that she performed professionally more than 70 times leads her to reflect happily on her decision to leave the concert platform, while still at the top of her game.

A Tandem Production for BBC Radio 3

Violinist Tasmin Little reflects on a glittering solo career.