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24 September 2014
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Charles Hazlewood (photo: Jason Bryant)
Charles Hazlewood

Interview: Charles Hazlewood

Helen Otter
The conductor and TV/radio presenter lives in Somerset, and broadcasts his Radio 2 show from the county. Read and listen to an interview with him.

BBC Somerset's Helen Otter met Charles at his farm in Somerset. You can listen to the full interview, in which Charles starts off by talking about his home in the county, by clicking on this audio link:

audio Interview: Charles Hazlewood >
Audio and Video links on this page require Realplayer

"My farm looks out over the edge of The Levels, and I can see Glastonbury Tor from here. It's a really great place to work.

"I sit here in my trailer learning scores before going off on tour, and jamming with musicians. Everything is good here, I tell you."

"I spend so much of my time working away, but I love being here. My family is in Somerset, and this is where my heart is."
Charles Hazlewood

You can hear Charles talking about his BBC Radio 2 show - how he puts it together, how it all came about, and also what he thinks of today's pop music!

Charles spent the first seven years of his life in Yeovil. After a period of time away from the county, he moved back to Somerset with his family.

"Somerset is the first proper country county you come to in the West, which isn't dependent on London and isn't full of commuters. Somerset is full of the most fantastically interesting people.

"I spend so much of my time working away, but I love being here. My family is in Somerset, and this is where my heart is."

In the interview, Charles also talks about how he got into conducting, his love of music and his favourite composer.

"All roads for me lead back to Mozart. In his tragically short life, he breathed new life, fire and meaning into every form of music that existed in his time.

Charles Hazlewood

"What makes him truly unique and special in the world of music is that he somehow, more than any other musician I can think of, managed to suggest joy and pain simultaneously. So his music is a true reflection of what we are as human beings.

"Every time I come to his music, whether I'm performing it myself or hearing someone else perform it, it re-engages me with my fundamental core.

"For anyone who doesn't have that connection with Mozart, I urge those people to go and find some of his music, because it can quite genuinely make you just glad to be alive."

You can also find out just how much Charles really does know about classical music, in a special quiz which Helen sprung on him at the last moment!

Charles conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the Glastonbury Abbey Musical Extravaganza 2006. Click on the link on the right to read a review.

last updated: 04/09/06
Have Your Say
What do you think of Charles Hazlewood? Have you seen him in concert, or heard his show?
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robert mayfield
Heard his show at Glastonbury Town Hall on Christmas Day night and thought it was brilliant. A nice mixture of all types of music.

Martin Moss
Charles's knowledge, charisma and communication skills make him indispensable to enjoyment of music on the BBC. Why the BBC uses him for the Proms on BBC4 but not on BBC 2 or BBC1 is not understood. Unfortunately, instead we have to put up with various Titchmarshes and Edwardses, which is a quite different experience. Charles, you're great.

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