You'll probably recognise the cover star of our April issue. Yes, to mark what would be the composer Sergey Rachmaninov's 150th birthday this month, a handpicked selection of performers including Steven Isserlis, Howard Shelley and Vasily Petrenko discuss the Romantic Russian's genius with our writer Andrew Green.


Staying with Rachmaninov, our editor Charlotte Smith meets the Clarion Choir, who are marking the composer's centenary-and-a-half by recording all his major choral works - including The Bells and the All-Night Vigil, the two works of which the great man was proudest of all.

Elsewhere, Steve Wright looks at some of our great composers' unlikely obsessions, from trainspotting to fear of the number 23 - via a certain French composer and his white-foods-only diet. And Claire Jackson
explores how Egypt and its rich history have inspired a wealth of music across the centuries.

Among our regular features, for this month's Musical Destination Charlotte Smith heads for the musical peaks of Gstaad in the Swiss Alps. For April's Composer of the Month, Claire Jackson examines how tackling tough subjects and forging his own technique have earned Steve Reich cult status.

And in Building a Library we continue to luxuriate in Rachmaninov's music, as our resident Russian music expert Daniel Jaffé sifts through the best recordings of the composer's evocative All-Night Vigil (Vespers).


Click here for the inlay of this month's cover CD.


Steve Wright
Steve WrightMulti-Platform Content Producer, BBC Music Magazine

Steve has been an avid listener of classical music since childhood, and now contributes a variety of features to BBC Music’s magazine and website. He started writing about music as Arts Editor of an Oxford University student newspaper and has continued ever since, serving as Arts Editor on various magazines.