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‘My Cultural Life’ – Mr D Burke

‘My Cultural Life’ – Mr D Burke

Mr Mark Zacharias, Head of English at Stamford High School, has started our latest lockdown project  – ‘My Cultural Life’. Inspired by the Times newspaper, amongst others: the Schools present interviews from individuals across our Stamford community, considering their cultural interests, loves and shortcomings.

We hope that these interviews help you to find inspiration during the unusual circumstances we find ourselves in, and that you enjoy learning a little more about us here at Stamford!

View all of our entries here.

 

Our next entry is from Mr Daniel Burke, Head of Maths at Stamford High School:

The box set I’m hooked on…

What’s a box set?

My favourite play…

Sorry, not enough leg room.

My favourite author or book…

Must widen this one. It is difficult to beat the way The Great Gatsby is written, and Birdsong is an emotive dream. Iris Murdoch novels have amazing characterisation, with instantly real protagonists, but she seems unable to write a story with a beginning, middle and a satisfactory ending. In contrast E M Forster is a poet in an author’s attire, who crafts such beauty in his prose without anything ever seeming to happen. Beginning, middle and end all in one? Then there are the geeky books, where, for me, Marcus du Sautoy tops out. Historically you cannot beat Simon Schama (where History lives) or Dan Jones, a Crusader if ever there was one…

The book I’m reading…

“Racing in The Dark” by David Millar. Honest, professional cyclist’s journey, from drug cheat to redemption. Millar illustrates how sports journalist David Walsh’s judgement of the sport is ‘too’ black and white…

The book I wish I had written…

“The Music of The Primes” by Marcus du Sautoy. Brilliant explanation, using imagery, of one of the most famous unsolved problems in mathematics.

The book that saved me…

“God is Not Great” by Christopher Hitchens. Logic applied to religion without the Dawkins derogatory dialogue.

The book I couldn’t finish…

Sebastian Faulks’ “Human Traces”. It was dire.

The book I’m ashamed I haven’t read…

Any Dostoevsky novel. I’m avoiding the challenge…

My favourite film…

Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back or Schindler’s List (or perhaps Rear Window, or…)

My favourite TV series…

Time Team – no contest

My favourite piece of music…

Bach’s Cello Suite No.1

My guiltiest cultural pleasure…

The kids have got me watching Gogglebox

If I could own one painting…

“Landscape at Twilight”, Van Gogh. A (hopeful) picture of my retirement.

The instrument I wish I’d learnt…

The piano, no patience…

The music that cheers me up…

Anything not on my daughter’s playlist

The place I feel happiest…

Anywhere with family and a pint

The film/play I walked out of…

“The Unbearable Lightness of Being”. No need for four of the words in the title.

I’m having a fantasy dinner party. I’ll invite these artists and authors…

Sorry, don’t enjoy socialising, i’m in lock down luxury.

And I’ll put on this music…

See previous answer.

I wasted an evening…

Watching any musical. Why pretend a short story is anything other than just that? Contentious?

Underrated…

Lock down

Overrated…

Socialising

 

Read more ‘My Cultural Life’ entries here.

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