As I listened to some music today, I realised how much has changed in my hearing since joining your music appreciation class. It’s as if I’m suddenly wearing hearing glasses, so that the details become an enriching factor.


A really fascinating and informative introduction to listening to classical music .

An inspiring approach to hearing both familiar and less known pieces from a vast range of wonderful music.

Richard Gonski draws from his wealth of knowledge to explain and offer new insights into the art of 'listening'

He offers an accessible approach to newcomers and those with some musical experience for the delight and enjoyment of all.

A big thank you for this generous teaching.


Richard wove the history and theories  and the music together to create such an interesting and intriguing story. The time flew each week. I also loved that a bag pipe player, a pianist and a proms goer could all find joy in the course! 

I always looked forward to your weekly zoom music appreciation sessions. With your passion, extensive knowledge  and depth of understanding of music history and composers, you managed to bring whatever work you chose for us to listen to to life and enabled us to hear it in a way we hadn't heard it before. All was communicated to us with great enthusiasm, humour and authority  and with love of the music you were sharing. You helped us to listen and hear music in a very personal, new way. Thank you.

Imagine the variety and excitement of a trip from, say, London to Boston to Beijing.  Whilst we missed foreign holidays during lockdown, Richard took us on an inspiring journey from Bach to Beethoven to Boulez and beyond, which was like a magical mystery tour.  We were encouraged to imagine a story unfolding as we listened to each work, and to look out for conversations between different instruments.  He opened our eyes (and ears) to the personal and political background which influenced each composer’s writing.  For those who associated riffs only with jazz and rock music, Richard alerted us to their use not just in one movement but uniting a whole work.  Richard has a great depth of musical knowledge and the means to share it with charisma.  This has influenced not only my listening ability but also the way I play my ‘cello.  Thank you, Richard, for providing an invaluable service to our community at a time when many of us were isolated from friends and family, as well as live culture.