Saturday 21 September 2019

My cultural life: violinist Anna Cashell

Anna Cashell
Anna Cashell
Emil Nolde
Into The West
The Letdown

Anna Cashell is a violinist from North Dublin, and has performed all over the world including in China's Forbidden City Concert Hall, Banff Institute for music in Canada, Mexico, Singapore, America and many venues in Europe. She is a founding member of the Esposito String Quartet and a member of the Irish Chamber Orchestra. She also enjoys performing recitals with her husband, pianist Simon Watterton. Esposito String Quartet will perform a programme of works by Boccherini, Shostakovich, Sebastian Adams and Grieg as part of the National Concert Hall's Sunday afternoon String Quartet Series in the Kevin Barry Room, on December 2 at 3pm.

Film: Into The West

Into The West

I saw this film (above) as a child and it's lingered in my mind since then. I love all the characters, the stunning scenery and, of course, the wonderful horse. I saw it before I went to study music in school in England when I was about 10 and its memory is forever etched in my mind as something fantastically Irish.

Book: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea by Barbara Demick. It is fascinating and terrifying to read about a country whose doors are closed to most of us. The bravery of those who have escaped from North Korea and have dared to tell their tale inspires me to live in a more open, courageous and empathetic way. This was the first book I read about this region and its brutal regime. Having travelled to South Korea a number of times it saddens me to know that these two countries can be so near in geography but so far in human rights.

Art: Emil Nolde

Emil Nolde

Earlier this year, when the Irish Chamber Orchestra was playing in Dublin, I got a chance to drop into The National Gallery to see Emil Nolde's Colour is Life exhibition (above) and I fell in love with his seascapes in particular. I grew up by the sea in Balbriggan and looking at Nolde's vividly colourful visions of the sea gives me an injection of inner peace.

Gig: Schubert String Quartet

Schubert String Quintet, C major, op 163, D956. This is such a typical Desert Island Discs favourite. I first heard this work as a teenager in the National Concert Hall performed by the Vanbrugh Quartet and Aisling Drury Byrne and I can still remember this performance vividly. The sublime melodies feel like they were written for all humanity - I can't believe that Schubert never heard this work performed. I was lucky enough to walk down the aisle to part of the slow movement performed by friends at my wedding.

TV: The Letdown

The Letdown

I had my second child recently and this Australian mini TV series (above) was perfect. It's a tongue-in-cheek look at the early days of motherhood. It made me laugh at the things I was going through!

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