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I'm a regular presenter for BBC Radio 3 on The Early Music Show, Afternoon Concert, In Concert, The Proms, and various Special Features including Proms Plus and the upcoming Al-Andalus Day. I also appear as a guest on Record Review in both New Releases and Building a Library, and have been a commentator on Opera on 3.

Some highlights are detailed below and click The BBC Radio Archive button to see a full list of programmes I've presented, or on which I've featured as a guest.

The Early Music Show

An exploration of early music, looking at early developments in musical performance and composition both in Britain and abroad. 

As a guest presenter I've explored composers from Roman to Handel, Bach to de Rore. Here's a fun one:

Los Hermanos Pla

A fascinating exploration of three extraordinary Catalonian brothers: Joan, Manuel and Josep Pla, who performed and composed in Barcelona, Lisbon and Madrid during the mid-18th century, including at the Spanish and Portuguese Royal courts.

Building a Library

An edited version of the regular Building a Library slot where guest experts review available recordings of a work from the classical music repertoire and give a recommendation.  Try this one:

Corelli: Violin Sonata Op. 5

 

Playing the Portrait: Gainsborough's Flautist

February 01, 2017

A Tate Britain Project:

To complement her essay ‘Music, Refinement, Masculinity’ in this In Focus, musicologist and baroque flautist Hannah French has been photographed in front of the painting holding a replica flute very similar to the one played by Keable and has performed three eighteenth-century pieces that would have been popular among amateur and professional musicians at the time. Recordings of the performance are reproduced here, along with an interview between French and In Focus lead author John Chu that sheds further light on musicianship as a form of sociability amid the polite classes in the eighteenth century and on the significance and popularity of the flute in the increasingly international music scene of Gainsborough’s time.

The photography, performance and interview took place in March 2016 in the galleries at Tate Britain and in the Tate Prints and Drawings Rooms. The pieces that French played are as follows: ‘Farewell Ye Hills and Valleys’, anonymous, from a traditional song published in The Muses Delight, Liverpool 1754; ‘Shepherd’s Complaint’, set by Mr Russell, published in The Delightful Pocket Companion for the German Flute, London [1745?]; ‘Minuet’, by Michael Christian Festing, from his Minuets with their Basses for His Majesty’s Birth Day, 9th Book, London 1738.

Jerusalem-Yerushalayim: An Oratorio by Antony Pitts

January 12, 2017

Hannah plays the wooden flute on this re-release on the Hyperion label.

An oratorio for our times by Antony Pitts remixed with Biblical narration by David Suchet, Jerusalem-Yerushalayim is an extraordinary musical cross between Handel’s Messiah, Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, and classic rock anthems, and tells simply but powerfully the Old Testament story of Jerusalem—in modern English but with ancient Hebrew names for familiar Biblical characters and places. Performed by Tonus Peregrinus and friends with a cast of outstanding singers and players.

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