One of ABC Classic FM’s most loved presenters, the broadcaster will celebrate 40 years on air next year.

The musical experiences I love best are the ‘live’ ones. I seldom sit at home glued to a sound system though one day I will listen to all the albums I’ve been gifted. Together they’ve the sonic equivalent of a photo album: my astonishing life with music and musicians.

It’s the ritual of concerts, the communion with other fans, and above all the visceral, theatrical experience of watching music being created in the moment that I love. Also the honesty of it, the non-verbal expression of human emotion unguarded, and the fact that each interpretation is unique, never to be repeated. As a music broadcaster, working on stage, back stage and in live broadcasts with musicians, the buzz is always there.

Mairi Nicolson and Robert Alagna Mairi Nicolson and Roberto Alagna

Another addiction I’m happy to confess to is the buzz of ‘live’ radio. When that red light goes on, it’s also a branch of theatrical performance. Writer Clive James once said that If you cannot be an artist, you can work in the...

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