Lunchbox/Soapbox: Emma Ayres on The Viola: A big violin, a small cello, or just a joke?

Lunchbox/Soapbox: Emma Ayres on The Viola: A big violin, a small cello, or just a joke?

As the old joke goes, the definition of a gentleman is someone who can play the viola, but chooses not to. So, what is a viola? Why did all the most famous composers play it, including Jimi Hendrix? And why is this beautiful instrument the laughing stock of the orchestra?

Emma Ayres is a classically trained musician and the darling of ABC Classic FM Breakfast. In this talk, she lets loose on the viola haters in a pointed, funny classical music rant. And to dispel any final doubts, she also plays.

Who?

Portrait of Ed Ayres

Ed Ayres

Ed Ayres is a writer, music teacher and broadcaster. He was born on the White Cliffs of Dover and began playing music when he was six years old. He studied music in Manchester, Berlin and London, played professionally in the UK and Hong Kong and moved to Australia in 2003. Ed is the presenter of ABC Classic’s Weekend Breakfast.

Ed has written four books - Cadence, about his journey by bicycle from England to Hong Kong with only a violin for company, Danger Music, describing his year teaching music in Afghanistan, Sonam and the Silence, a children’s book about the importance of music, and his most recent, Whole Notes - Life Lessons in Music. Ed’s books have been shortlisted for several prestigious awards, including the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. 

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