Practice Session



The time set aside for practising is one of the most undocumented, intimate and secret periods of a professional musician's existence - never seen by audiences or critics. It is a time of discovery, of decision-making, of frustration when things just don't go right, or of surprise and elation when something goes unexpectedly well. There are the times when musicians see a piece for the first time and groan with horror at all the semiquavers. And there is the endless repetition to make a phrase absolutely perfect. This programme explores what practising means to three leading concert musicians - the cellist Steven Isserlis, the pianist David Owen Norris and the flautist Philippa Davies - as we eavesdrop on their routines and rituals at home, far away from the glamour of the concert stage.