Iona Mclaren

Can anyone become an accomplished violinist?

A circle of shell-shocked parents in a mansion flat; a dozen toddlers gripping minute, 16th-size violins, the concentration causing them to sway like drunks; the merciless sawing of their tiny bows; and a noise of indescribable horror – ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ reconceived as the hold music for Hell. These were the group violin lessons

Cooking the books | 15 September 2016

Cooking really shouldn’t make good radio. On television, it’s already frustrating that you can’t taste what you’re seeing, but on radio you can’t even see it. ‘I’m just cracking an egg,’ they tell you. ‘And now I’ll crack another egg.’ The sounds — violent thuds, hissing gas, moist chewing — are more ominous than appetising