Being in hospital will have fuelled my remembrances of musicians I have had the pleasure and good fortune of speaking to, whether informally at a ‘do’ and/or during an interview, and who sadly are no longer with us.

Things coming in threes, the first of the ‘dear departed’ to reach my thoughts were Pierre Boulez (charming and illuminating; pictured), Sir Colin Davis (always the “modest and unassuming” man I had read about) and Lorin Maazel (very approachable and easy to converse with). Then Vernon ‘Tod’ Handley, Richard Hickox, Mariss Jansons, Sir Charles Mackerras, Sir Neville Marriner, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Tony Payne, André Previn and Chris Rouse came to mind.

Good now to take cheer that other interviewees – such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Manny Ax, Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Yefim Bronfman, Semyon Bychkov, Christoph von Dohnányi, Barry Douglas, Sir Mark Elder, JoAnn Falletta, Daniel Harding, Stephen Hough, Paavo Järvi, Piers Lane, John Lill, Sir Roger Norrington, Sakari Oramo, Steven Osborne, Sir Tony Pappano and Leonard Slatkin – remain active … and long may that continue. Apologies to absentees in the above roll-call and also for my indulgence.

Eloquence releases Colin Davis’s Beethoven Odyssey.

RELEASED TODAY, July 24: Christopher Rouse – Symphony 5, Supplica, Concerto for Orchestra – Giancarlo Guerrero conducts the Nashville Symphony [Naxos]

Vladimir Ashkenazy Retires