Robin Holloway

Fab four

The last of 2009’s remarkable concatenation of musical anniversaries was celebrated — if that is the word — by Radio Three on New Year’s Eve with a chat show in which each of the four great composers was allotted a defence by a noteworthy music lover, backed up by live phone calls for a brief, impromptu telegram, illustrated with well-chosen extracts from their works, subjected to dissenting discussion, and eventually put to the vote at the hands of the anonymous mass of listeners.

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