9 August 1942: first performance of Shostakovich’s Seventh Symphony in Leningrad

Following the post about Shostakovich’s Seventh, I was asked for the story about the first Leningrad performance. Laurel E. Fay has written about it so well that I shall quote her (entirely referenced of course – not plagiarism), along with Elizabeth Wilson. Both are fascinating accounts of Shostakovich’s life and work. Laurel E. Fay, ‘The … More 9 August 1942: first performance of Shostakovich’s Seventh Symphony in Leningrad

In the Wellcome Library: Stoddart and Smart

During today’s post-lunch recovery phase at the Wellcome Library, I found a short book by William Henry Butter Stoddart (1868-1950) an eminent practitioner in the field of ‘mental diseases’ in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His 1908 textbook The Mind and its Disorders was a key text for doctors interested in emerging ideas about psychology … More In the Wellcome Library: Stoddart and Smart

In the Wellcome Libary: garden chalets and custard

The reading rooms at the Wellcome Library in Euston Road are airier and cooler (in all senses of the word) alternatives to the sometimes oppressive gloom and shuffling-noises of Rare Books and Music at the British Library. The only problem is that there are so many enticing titles staring at me from the shelves that … More In the Wellcome Libary: garden chalets and custard