Vivaldi’s programmatic masterpiece, the Four Seasons, mirrors the eras of his life, as we explore the musical delights of each season in tandem with the composer’s journey from riches to rags.


Nina Simone’s classical origins are revealed, as we accompany her on the path to becoming a world-class pianist, singer and song-writer. Plus, Carole Boyd of The Archers opens up about the music that has shaped her life and career.

Elsewhere in the issue, John Evans discovers the 15 unusual ways that music venues sell tickets and get bums on seats. Plus, Richard Morrison reflects on 2018 as a year defined both by increasing intolerance in the world of classical music and by innovation in the performance of repertoire. If you’re looking now towards the new year, we asked ten musicians what they are hoping for, and what they fear will bring disaster, in 2019.


Click the image below to download the inlay for this month's free cover CD.

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Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.