Hard talk-back

Read this brilliant letter to the BBC by one Alexander Robinson, whose content, style and sentiments I deeply admire. He castigates the BBC for its poor attitude to and coverage of opera and other art-forms.

Click here to go to his blog.

Published in: on August 2, 2013 at 09:30  Comments (6)  

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I presume that the interviewer was archly voicing what the BBC perceives as being the view of a public so stupid that arts and classical music programmes have to be simplified for them, and presented as if to children.

  2. Alexander is a brilliant writer who has done his homework – a devastating combination.
    Loved the letter, especially the last line….

  3. Philly – thank you for the compliments. This is the first letter of complaint I have ever written to anybody. Maybe I should get angry more often!

    Sarah – quite. It’s symptomatic of the approach I find all-too-common in TV, the need to make everything “accessible” by assuming that the viewer is a total ignoramus. It’s all the more disappointing given that the BBC can get things so spectacularly right – Radio 3 and Radio 4, the Proms, Tony Pappano’s documentary on Tosca that aired at Christmas a couple of years ago, even Stephen Fry on Wagner (though that was more of a travelogue, really) – and yet still feels the need in its “generalist” broadcasts to belittle the arts and insult the viewer. This interview was simply the last straw for a very, very patient man, and I’m not even a professional musician!

  4. I hate it when interviewers assume that they are voicing the “concerns” of a majority of people who obviously much stupider and more determinedly uncultured than the interviewer his/herself. John Humphries is a prime exponent (mind you he’s WELL past his sell-by date). They end up sounding boorish, patronising, bullying and cliched. I’m glad Alexander has said this.

  5. I can’t BEAR John Humphries – I hope Ms Montague isn’t queuing up to fill his shoes when he finally (FINALLY) retires.

    OOH – how funny – I misspelt ‘Humphries’ first time round and the spell-check insisted I meant ‘humilities’ instead!

  6. I see Alexander has had a reply!


    It’s very long – am just off to have a careful read.

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