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A Sober Composer Looks at Some Thistles

In the first in a series of special lectures on Art, Science, & Public Life, Professor Sir James MacMillan explores the visionary, the mystical, the transcendent, the inexpressible & the dark in music and other arts of our time. In discussing music & poetry of the 20th and 21st centuries, the composer looks at the continual search for the sacred in post-secular society. Followed by a discussion with Stuart Kelly.

Sir James MacMillan is one of today's most successful composers and is also internationally active as a conductor. His musical language is flooded with influences from his Scottish heritage, Catholic faith, social conscience and close connection with Celtic folk music, blended with influences from Far Eastern, Scandinavian and Eastern European music.

Stuart Kelly is a writer, critic and reviewer. He is the author of The Book Of Lost Books: An Incomplete Guide To All The Books You'll Never Read and Scott-Land: The Man Who Invented A Nation.