Manage episode 284834702 series 2796573
In this episode of #TheNewAbnormal, I interview Sophy Roberts, journalist and author of 'The Lost Pianos of Siberia'. She focuses on travel stories in remote parts of the world, with a special interest in literature, history, culture and conversation. The ex-Travel Editor of The Economist and a Special Correspondent for Conde Nast Traveller, she shoots articles as well as writing them, including cover features for the Financial Times. Her first non-fiction book, The Lost Pianos of Siberia was named a Times, Sunday Times and Independent ‘Book of the Year’, a ‘Best Travel Book of 2020’ by Smithsonian Magazine, The Spectator, and i paper, and recently shortlisted for the Stanford Dolman Travel Book of 2021. As she says of the book, which is currently being translated into seven languages, "Siberia's expansive history is traditionally one of exiles, bitter cold and suffering. Yet there is another tale to tell..." (The Wall St Journal commented "these pages sing like a symphony".) Sophy also contributes to radio, podcast and panel events, including the BBC, The Economist, Times Radio, Tortoise and The Royal Geographical Society. So, we discuss all of the above, along with issues inc the business of tourism vs the serendipity of travel, music as a conduit of hope, the solace of culture, travel as an act of empathy, and the need to 'keep looking outwards' in the age of Covid. And, somewhat obviously, I have to say that I found her stories about the people, landscape and history of Siberia to be absolutely fascinating. And, of course, I hope you do too.