Friday Historical: the Best Famous Belgian!

You want a famous Belgian? I’ll give you a famous Belgian, one who hasn’t had even a look-in in the news beside Mr van R these past couple of days: Cesar Franck, the one and only, the creator of what’s probably the world’s most gorgeous romantic violin sonata, to say nothing of that wonderful symphony that nobody ever seems to programme any more. (Time to bring it back, please…) In short, Franck was the best thing ever to come out of Belgium without being made of chocolate.

Here are Christian Ferras and Pierre Barbizet in the last movement of that sonata.

(Tomorrow: a cellist takes to podcasting, but where’s the cello?)

An autumn note

“For many, the end of this uneasy year cannot come quickly enough”

An ordinary killing

Ian Cobain’s book uses the killing of Millar McAllister to paint a meticulous portrait of the Troubles

Greater—not wiser

John Mullan elucidates the genius of Charles Dickens