Friday 5 October, 4.30pm
(Approx running time: 60 mins, no interval)
£7.50 / £5
In collaboration with Boswell Book Festival
How Shostakovich Changed My Mind
Stephen Johnson in conversation with James Knox.
BBC music broadcaster Stephen Johnson explores the power of Shostakovich’s music during Stalin’s reign of terror, and writes of the extraordinary healing effect of music on sufferers of mental illness. Johnson looks at neurological, psychotherapeutic and philosophical findings, and reflects on his own experience, where he believes Shostakovich’s music helped him survive the trials and assaults of bipolar disorder. ‘There’s something about hearing your most painful emotions transformed into something beautiful...’ The old Russian who uttered those words spoke for countless fellow survivors of Stalin’s reign of terror. And the ‘something beautiful’ he had in mind was the music of Dmitri Shostakovich.