An early photograph of Sinatra, the flute-thin crooner.From Charles Pignone’s Sinatra 100 (Thames & Hudson)

Frank Sinatra never went away — but did he ever grow up?

7 November 2015 9:00 am

‘He never went away. All those other things that we thought were here to stay, they did go away. But…


Helen Vendler is full of condescending waffle (and not just when she’s attacking me)

25 July 2015 9:00 am

Is it possible to tell a good poem from a bad one? To put the question another way: are there…

Philip Glass's seminal 1976 opera 'Einstein on the Beach' in its most recent outing

Plumber, taxi driver, mystic, musician — the many facets of Philip Glass

11 April 2015 9:00 am

Philip Hensher infinitely prefers the words to the music of the maverick ‘minimalist’ composer

Composer, conductor and pianist Leonard Bernstein Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty

Leonard Bernstein: a bad case of important-itis

29 November 2014 9:00 am

On 17 May 1969 Leonard Bernstein ended his 12-year run as musical director of the New York Philharmonic with a…

Neil Young and Billy Idol Photo: Getty

Songs for the road: through his music and his classic car collection Neil Young hopes to escape his childhood traumas

22 November 2014 9:00 am

Why do people talk about ‘experimenting’ with drugs when mostly they just mean that they’re doing them? Perhaps, as I…

John Burnside Photo: Getty

My desert island poet

31 May 2014 9:00 am

If I had to be marooned on a desert island with a stranger, that stranger would be John Burnside. Not…

Constant Lambert at the piano

The wit, wisdom and womanising of Constant Lambert

24 May 2014 9:00 am

Philip Hensher on the tragically short life of the ebullient and multi-talented musician, Constant Lambert

A Soviet soldier buys a ticket for the  performance of the Seventh Symphony in Leningrad in August 1942

Shostakovich, Leningrad, and the greatest story ever played

11 January 2014 9:00 am

The horrors of the Leningrad siege — the 900 Days of Harrison Salisbury’s classic — have been pretty well picked…


The food of love

4 January 2014 9:00 am

The Albek Duo are two astonishingly beautiful and talented Venetian musicians, Fiona and Ambra, who are identical twins. Hearing the…

Leonard Bernstein in 1945

Did Leonard Bernstein do too much to be a great artist?

16 November 2013 9:00 am

Nigel Simeone’s title for his edition of Leonard Bernstein’s correspondence rings compellingly, novellistically, through the force of the definite article,…


'If I can barely speak, then I shall surely sing'

26 October 2013 9:00 am

A few weeks ago, I was wandering with a friend around West London when our conversation turned to the reliable…