Michael Spencer: One-armed cellist

michael spencer one armed cellist

Next time you’re looking for a paltry excuse not to do something, or you’re complaining you find a task particularly difficult, think of this amazing kid, Michael Spencer.

A video shot at a recital a couple of weeks back has been doing the rounds on the internet. Watch the video here. It’s amazin’.

It is the most remarkable thing and a timely reminder to any of us who obsess that we’re “just not good enough”.


New job

Its been a long time in the planning, but I am now (finally) able to announce that I have a new job.

After nearly nine years at the BBC, I’m soon going to take up a new role at ABC’s Classic FM working on an exciting new project for a new, as yet, untapped audience.

Classic FM² is not just another classical music radio station: this one is for busy people, a station that provides those who don’t have time to listen to an entire movement of a symphony with an alternative: a specially condensed version of a work. From August of this year, great long Wagner operas will be a thing of the past. So too those expansive Mahler symphonies. Now everyone will be able to listen to classical music in the time they have available, without any risk of getting bored. And they’ll understand it too. It’s going to be a revolution, so I’m told.

There are many things to sort out before then of course. There’s accommodation to sort in Australia for a start, plus working out how we’re going to transport our possessions. In particular, we’re going to have to work out how we’re going to transport the cats to Melbourne. They’re quite picky travellers.

Why I’ve been neglecting classical music recently

I’ve been neglecting classical music just recently. The same thing has happened to my personal diary. My usual religious devotion to both has slipped. And that makes me feel a bit sad, as though I’ve let the side down a bit. As though I’ve let go of one of the balls I juggle.

There are a number of reasons I think. I’ve been distracted by a number of other things. Work has been terribly busy. My primary focus – the About the BBC Blog – is busier than its ever been. A mixture of commissions, interviews and transcriptions keeps me and the marvellous team I work with busy. A creative writing course led by writer Shaun Levin combined with a renewed obsession with daily writing exercises, means that the idea of writing a personal blog demands energy and, of course, ideas. Regurgitating press releases doesn’t appeal. There’s the garden – the new decking is now adorned with some cleaned out and re-ordered pots, now awaiting plants. In short, there is far too much else to be getting on with.

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