Classical music downloads rival football

It’s two years since Tasmin Little launched her hugely successful Naked Violin project.

Tamsin Little for the Swansea Arts Festival

Designed to make classical music as easily accessible as possible, The Naked Violin was available for anyone to download free from the British violinist’s website.

In an unprecedented move, Tasmin challenged the public to do three things: download the recording; listen to it; and go to a concert, buy a CD, or write to her directly to tell her why you wouldn’t do either. She received so many emails that it took her and her team months to reply to them all.

In two years, The Naked Violin free download has achieved over three terabytes of downloads from over 100 countries and it continues to attract downloads daily. Tasmin has talked about her project in newspaper, radio and television interviews, and after one national television interview, the number of Naked Violin downloads came very close to those of the Scottish Football Cup after its final.

Tasmin has been inundated with requests for her to play in schools, workplaces, centres for the homeless and people with learning disabilities around the world. She takes time out of her busy concert schedule to give 'No Strings Attached' workshops, an interactive version of the 'Naked Violin' downloads, in which she talks about and plays solo violin works by Patterson, Bartok and Ysaye. Those listening, young people and adults who may never before have had the opportunity to experience classical music, can ask questions and feel part of the performance.

Tasmin says 'The Naked Violin has become an integral part of my life and is a project that I will continue with for as long as there are still people who invite me to come and play to them... Keep the emails and invitations coming!’ In February 2011 she will be artist-in-residence for a week at Kings Place, London, organising a range of musical events for children and adults.