A particularly inspiring episode of Music Matters last week. This photo shows the wonderful Else Marie Pade, first in our Hidden Voices series. Her life in Denmark was singular and focused; her music is dark, troubling and enthralling. Elsewhere, Neeme Järvi told me A LOT about the immense about of music he’s recorded, and Ed Vulliamy talked with tremendous pathos about his new book When Words Fail – questions around what music might mean in times of war.
Listen to the programme here.
First published in The Herald on 5 September, 2018
The harpist Emily Hoile was 19 the first time we met. She had never done an interview before. She was just through secondary school in Edinburgh, newly a college student at Julliard in New York, still getting to grips with life outside the UK. She told me about the dismal calibre of tea drinking she encountered in the United States, and the lifeline that was her mum’s regular care package of chocolate bars. She was utterly self-effacing about having just been booked for a major five-concert residency at the Lammermuir Festival.
Seven years later, Hoile’s voice comes down the phone with her native Newcastle vowels now rounded by stints in New York, Munich and Berlin. Much has happened since we last spoke. She completed her studies at Julliard and immediately won a place on the world’s most prestigious orchestral apprenticeship scheme – Berlin’s Karajan Academy, in which select young players work side-by-side with members of the Berlin Philharmonic. Which is to say, a month after finishing her undergraduate, Hoile found herself touring with the most august orchestra on the planet. But even that didn’t last long – because a year into the scheme, Hoile was poached by another top German band. At the age of 23, she became principal harp of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.