Peter Skellern’s piano-playing was too pure for his professor | Letters

Peter Skellern standing playing a piano, 1975
Peter Skellern on Rock On With 45, 1975. Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock

Your obituary of the talented and much-lamented Peter Skellern (20 February) reminds me of an anecdote the singer-songwriter told during a concert in Manchester in the 1980s about his time at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.

He had to play Debussy’s La fille aux cheveux de lin for his piano professor. He thought he had played it rather well, with all the appropriate feeling required. The professor asked him if he was a virgin. He rather embarrassedly replied that he was. He was advised to go away and not play it again until he was not.

When he got back to his student digs he announced to his housemates: “You will never guess what I have been given for homework!”
David Shannon
Woore, Shropshire

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