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We l c om e

‘ Pract ice,’ so t he say ing goes , ‘makes perfect ’. If only it was that simple. Yes, to master almost any skill, repetition is key, but the jour ney doesn’t end when t he sk i l l has been achieved. Then comes t he ta sk of maintenance, which requires patience and dedication. I don’t mind admit t ing t hat , as a violin student, I disliked practising

– and it was that continual maintenance that seemed such a chore. It felt grossly unfair that if I stopped playing my scales and études, my facility would gradually fade – especially when I had worked so hard to achieve it in the f irst place.

Yet the fault was not with practice, but with my attitude towards it. As we see from two articles this month, for t he bes t musicians pract ice i s an endlessly fa scinat ing ac t of discovery. On page 34, violinist Rachel Barton Pine describes her love of the violin, forged through hours of selfmotivated practice in childhood. And on page 46, amateur v iol in i s t Ariane Todes embraces t he rout ine by ta k ing on Hilary Hahn’s #100daysofpractice Instagram challenge.

This month’s cover ar t i s t Ja kub Józef Orliń sk i hasn’t shied away from hard work either – perfecting skills not only as a countertenor but as a champion breakdancer too. On page 26, he speaks to Rebecca Franks about adding yet another skill to his arsenal, as artistic director of his latest operatic recording project. Read on to be inspired, and perhaps a little intimidated…

Charlotte Smith Editor


Rebecca Franks Writer and editor ‘He’s a star counter tenor, a brilliant breakdancer and, it turns out, one of those dream interviewees who is full of enthusiasm. Meeting Jakub

Józef Orliński to hear about his latest passion – Gluck’s Or feo ed Euridice – was a treat.’ Page 26

Steve Wright Content producer, BBC Music ‘What makes a piece of music an ideal studying companion? While drawing up my shor tlist, I found myself mulling (and discussing) this question constantly. “Vocals: yes or no?” proved a par ticularly lively talking point…’ Page 56

Misha Donat Writer and composer ‘I was privileged to know Dallapiccola in his last years, and to spend time with him in both Florence and London. His immaculate appearance and perfectly chiselled music seemed to go hand in hand!’ Page 62


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