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Stephen Grosz

Michael Berkeley's guest is psychoanalyst and author Stephen Grosz. His choices include Scarlatti, Aaron Copland, Brahms, Bessie Jones, Schubert, Bob Dylan and Alberta Hunter.

Stephen Grosz waited until he was 60 to publish his first book, 'The Examined Life'. It was a huge overnight success - a bestseller here in Britain and translated into more than 20 languages across the world. It's a distillation of the lifetime he has spent as a psychoanalyst, tens of thousands of hours listening to people in hospitals, forensic clinics and in private practice. It reads like a collection of short stories, full of vignettes of memorable characters: the man who faked his own death, the pathological liar, the lovesick middle-aged woman who meets a man at a party - and turns up at his house the next week with a removals van to move in with him.

In Private Passions, in conversation with Michael Berkeley, Stephen Grosz tells his own story: his childhood in Chicago, the son of immigrants who ran a grocery store; student days in radical Berkeley; and now, settled in Britain, how he's facing the challenges of fatherhood and ageing. Music has played an important part right from the beginning, and Grosz admits that his choice of music is very psychologically revealing.

His musical choices include Scarlatti, Aaron Copland, Brahms's 3rd Symphony, gospel singer Bessie Jones, Schubert's Piano Sonata no 20, Bob Dylan - and a hilarious Alberta Hunter song about sex, My Handy Man Ain't Handy No More.

Produced by Elizabeth Burke. A Loftus production for BBC Radio 3.

First broadcast 03/08/2014

To hear previous episodes of Private Passions, please visit http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/r3pp/all.

1 hour

Last on

Sun 10 May 2015 12:00

Clip

Music Played

  • Domenico Scarlatti

    Sonata in F minor, Kk466

    Performer: Vladimir Horowitz.
  • Domenico Scarlatti

    Sonata in F minor, Kk466

    Performer: Vladimir Horowitz.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Symphony No.3 in F major, Op.90 (3rd mvt)

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Symphony No.3 in F major, Op.90 (3rd mvt)

    Orchestra: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Claudio Abbado.
  • E. Blake

    My Handyman ain't Handy

    Singer: Alberta Hunter.
  • E. Blake

    My Handyman ain't Handy

    Singer: Alberta Hunter.
  • Trad.

    O Death

    Choir: Georgia Sea Island Singers. Singer: Bessie Jones.
  • Trad.

    O Death

    Choir: Georgia Sea Island Singers. Singer: Bessie Jones.
  • Franz Schubert

    Piano Sonata in A, D959 (2nd mvt: Andantino)

    Performer: Alfred Brendel.
  • Franz Schubert

    Piano Sonata in A, D959 (2nd mvt: Andantino)

    Performer: Alfred Brendel.
  • Bob Dylan

    Not Dark Yet

  • Bob Dylan

    Not Dark Yet

  • Aaron Copland

    Quiet City

    Conductor: Leonard Bernstein. Orchestra: New York Philharmonic.
  • Aaron Copland

    Quiet City

    Conductor: Leonard Bernstein. Orchestra: New York Philharmonic.

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