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 →  Five minutes with... Maria Włoszczowska

Five minutes with... Maria Włoszczowska

MW Fi Phillips

Violinist Maria Włoszczowska joins Royal Northern Sinfonia as Leader, beginning her tenure at Opening Night on Saturday 18 September.

Ahead of the performance, we spent five minutes with Maria over a cuppa to ask her all the important questions! Here’s what she had to say about mischief, perfection, guilty pleasures, and the importance of humour.

1) Who or what inspires you?
Anyone with a spark in their eye and an appetite for kind mischief.

2) Where, or what, is perfection?
To me, perfection is being entirely in the moment – in music, work, relations with people, anything of value. Being able to channel a life force so strong it obliterates any worries or distractions.

3) What special talent or skill do you wish you possessed?
To be able to fly – or pilot anything that flies. I’m slowly getting there…!

4) What is the most important lesson that life has taught you?
That it’s safe and valid to be completely myself – and that it’s the most enjoyable way to live.

5) What is the most recent album that you’ve bought or streamed?
‘Undercurrent’ by Bill Evans.

6) What is your favourite ritual?
My husband reading out loud to me.

7) What is your most treasured possession?
My mum’s elderly teddy bear.

8) What did you want to be when you were growing up?
A jazz singer.

9) What is your most guilty pleasure?
Shopping for beautifully made clothes.

10) What composer or musician, past or present, would you most like to have dinner with, and why?
Haydn, for the sense of humour and warmth. If I were allowed another, it would be Korngold – those recordings of him improvising on an upright piano at house parties!

11) Which composer or musician is the most underrated in your opinion?
There are many but to me it has to be Korngold. He is getting more and more recognition but I think he’s still a hugely under-appreciated genius.

See Maria perform with the orchestra, for the first time as Leader, at Opening Night on Saturday 18 September.