Peace in Hiroshima

IMG_3891 Itsukushima Shrine

The shrine on Miyajima / Itsukushima

I’m not sure if Hiroshima would be a tourist destination had 6th August 1945 been different. Maybe it would just be a place to stay to easily get to the sacred island of Itsukushima, and I don’t think I would’ve heard of the city. But in 2016 the city received 2 million visitors, and it was one of the ten city stops on my around-the-country tour of Japan. Continue reading


Māori Music


I recently came back from a once-in-a-lifetime whirlwind wonder tour of New Zealand. It wasn’t an especially musical trip – unless you count scrolling through NZ’s best RnB radio stations or listening to the Lord Of The Rings soundtracks on repeat. We spent a lot of time looking at gorgeous landscapes and stunning natural scenes, and even more time running around pretending to be Hobbits/Elves/Tolkien-creatures-of-your-choice. But in between, we did manage to squeeze in a bit of Māori culture on our tour of Middle Earth. Continue reading

Berlioz’s ‘Le Carnaval Romain’ overture


Piazza Colonna – the setting of the ‘Carnaval’

Another programme note – this time for an entirely French programme. This one was a nice opportunity to look back at Berlioz, and most notably his unintentionally hilarious Memoirs. I wrote my undergrad dissertation about Berlioz so there was something very comforting about returning to this slightly mad composer. Continue reading

Haworth Parsonage


View of the church from the Parsonage

Usually I just stick to musical locations, but I’m going to branch out to somewhere a little more literary. (That’s not to say this isn’t in some ways a musical place, but that’s not what it’s known for). The Haworth Parsonage was the home of the Brontë family, and I’ve been a Brontë-mega-fan for as long as I can remember. One of my closest friends lives in Yorkshire and I’d been badgering her for a long time about going. So we made our way over the moors for a visit. Continue reading