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Anita Lasker-Wallfisch

Sue Lawley's castaway is cellist Anita Lasker-Wallfisch.

The castaway in Desert Island Discs this week is the cellist Anita Lasker-Wallfisch. One of the most distinguished members of the English Chamber Orchestra, she has toured all over the world with them.

However, as she will be telling Sue Lawley, up until the early 1980s, she always refused to visit one country - Germany. For it was from there that her Jewish parents were taken away by the Gestapo, never to be seen again. From the age of 18, she herself was taken away to Auschwitz. There, because she was able to play the cello, she survived, and played in the camp's orchestra. However, when she was later moved to Belsen, she nearly didn't. She'll be talking about playing in the orchestra at Auschwitz, about the importance of music in sustaining life both then and now, and about her feelings towards Germany and the Germans more than 50 years after the events of her early life.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Favourite track: Piano Sonata Opus 111 by Ludwig van Beethoven
Book: The History of the World by J M Roberts
Luxury: Cello

Available now

40 minutes

Last on

Fri 30 Aug 1996 09:05

Music Played

  • Franz Schubert

    String Quartet No. 14 in D minor 'Death and the Maiden'

    Orchestra: The Amadeus Quartet

    • Death And The Maiden.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Din Giovanni Act 2, Scene 6

    Orchestra: The Scottish Opera Soloist: Roger Sawyer, Geraint Evans

    • Don Giovanni.
    • EMI.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    St Matthew Passion - Wir setzen uns mit Tränen nieder

    Orchestra: The Munich Bach Orchestra & Choir Conductor: Karl Richter

    • J.S. Bach - Matthaus Passion.
    • Archiv.
  • Benjamin Britten

    Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge

    Soloist: Benjamin Britten Orchestra: The English Chamber Orchestra

    • Young Person's Guide To The Orchestra.
    • Decca.
  • Robert Schumann

    Cello Concerto in A minor

    Orchestra: The Philharmonia Chorus and Orchestra Soloist: Jacqueline Du Pre

    • Schumann: Concertos For Cello And Piano.
    • EMI.
  • Antonín Dvořák

    Serenade in E Major, Op. 22

    Orchestra: The English Chamber Orchestra Conductor: Rafael Kubelik

    • Smetana: Die Moldau.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Cello Sonata No. 2 in F major

    Soloist: Peter Wallfisch, Raphael Wallfisch

    • Brahams Cello Sonatas.
    • Chandos.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Ludwig van Beethoven

      Piano Sonata No. 32 in C minor, Op. 111

      Soloist: Peter Wallfisch

  • Book Choice

    • The History of the World - J M Roberts

  • Luxury Choice

    • Cello


Role Contributor
Presenter Sue Lawley
Interviewed Guest Anita Lasker-Wallfisch


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