Archive for April, 2016

London classical music listings

April 13, 2016


Guardian Time Out concert-diary visitlondon londonclassical concerts bachtrack
11-Apr 2 3 2 9 N/A 2 2
12-Apr 8 5 2 12 3 2 3
13-Apr 5 6 3 10 2 2 9
14-Apr 7 9 5 14 2 5 8
15-Apr 6 7 8 18 3 8 12
16-Apr N/A 6 8 15 1 8 9
17-Apr N/A 4 4 14 0 4 10

An enquirer on Tripadvisor wants to know the best classical music listings for London.

So we put ‘classical music listings london’ into Google and discounting individual venues what we get is as follows.  Time Out is horribly clunky and incomplete.  Concert Diary is quite neat but also incomplete. is comprehensive but pretty clunky and difficult to get useful information out of. seems to be a site for selling tickets at some of the main venues. is also pretty clunky but gives you a lot of detail on a restricted number of concerts.  Bachtrack is whizzy and gives useful information quickly and neatly, as well as being reasonably complete.  By way of comparison, the hard-copy Guardian listings are also neatly laid out, but not especially complete.

So we recommend Bachtrack, supplemented by if you think you might be missing something.

Half-day conference on OR in Healthcare, Southampton April 27

April 6, 2016


Sally Brailsford announces:

Half-day mini-conference on OR in Healthcare
Wednesday April 27, 14.00 – 17.30
University of Southampton, Building 2, Room 3043

The theme of this event is practical applications of OR modelling in healthcare. The talks will be suitable for a general audience as well as OR specialists with an interest in health.  Speakers:

  • Martin Caunt, Operational Research & Evaluation Unit, NHS England
  • Martin Utley, Clinical OR Unit, University College London
  • Martin Pitt, PenCHORD, NIHR CLAHRC South West, University of Exeter
  • Julie Eatock, Brunel University London
  • Daniel Gartner, Cardiff University
  • Paul Benson, Southampton City Clinical Commissioning Group

There is no charge for this event and all are welcome, but please RSVP by April 22 by email  for catering purposes and if you would like a parking space (note, these are limited).

Belfast Summer School in Classics, 4-8 July

April 5, 2016
Gratuitous picture of Belfast by night

Gratuitous picture of Belfast by night

An announcement on the CLASSICISTS list says:

The Classical Association in Northern Ireland is delighted to invite you to the first Classical Greek summer school in Belfast.  The school is open to all over the age of 18.  This year, courses will be offered to complete beginners and those with a rudimentary knowledge of Classical Greek. 

There will be two hours of teaching each morning, at 10-11am and 12 noon-1pm, Monday to Friday, and afternoon classes from 2-3pm on Monday and Wednesday, allowing time for private study between sessions. 

The fee for the course is £75 and the closing date for receipt of applications is Friday 3rd June 2016.  For further information and an application form, please contact the co-ordinator, Helen McVeigh by email

There’s also a Facebook page here.

The Russian school of dressmaking (in translation)

April 2, 2016


We have received the following query:

I am learning how to draft and sew my own clothes. There are these fabulous Russian books and dvds that have ALL I want.They teach you easy and clever ways to get the right fit without having to do numerous alterations . They have those great techniques that would give you professional results without having to put much effort!

 I could not find them in anywhere in English!!!

The problem is that they are in Russian and I have been trying to find a translation agency that has reasonable prices but they are Way too much for me . It is for my personal use , I don’t intend to sell and gain profit.

Most would charge between 8-15 cents per word and for 1 hour dvd the prices are outrages like 1000 dollars!

I wonder do you know of a reasonable price translation agency or individual who has good translations but not expensive?

There is a software but it still needs someone to review and by the way it costs 300 dollars.

It seems to me that it’s highly unlikely ever to be an economic proposition to have a book translated especially for yourself.

If it was me, I think I would pay for some dressmaking lessons instead, as being cheaper and more useful.

If you want to use the books/DVDs, I would advertise on Gumtree (craigslist, etc) for a Russian speaker to spend an hour or three going through them with you and explaining what they’re about–that might be enough if there are plenty of illustrations.  The other thing to remember is that a surprising amount of Russian ‘practical’ literature is derived from foreign-language sources, so that’s something you could easily get someone to check for you–whether there’s an English-language original it’s been adapted from.

For a specific technical area with a restricted vocabulary and range of grammatical constructions automatic translation might be good enough though I’m not sure how you would get the text in from a hard-copy original. If you can get the text in electronic form, try a sample on one of the free online translators and see how useful the result is.

However, I can’t help feeling that what you want to know is common currency among women of a certain age and background–for instance, anyone who was a young woman in the UK in the 1940s or 1950s will know how to make her own clothes and have spent many, many evenings doing so…It’s just a case of making contact.

If I think about cooking, which unlike dressmaking I do know about, I find it quite hard to cook from an American recipe–not only are the measures different, but some common implements and procedures are described differently and some of the ingredients are just different.  Still more with a recipe in French…My point here being again that you really need a person rather than a text…

Meanwhile, a translator (retired) has kindly commented as follows:

I agree with all the comments. And even in leafy Leamington you can get group or private sewing lessons really easily.

Why the questioner has ended up with Russian sources only I can’t imagine. It’s likely that there are still more people dress-making in Russia than UK/US, but there are older books giving this sort of information in English. Re the translation – it’s the sort of comment that makes my blood boil. If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. I bet she doesn’t do her own job for less than the minimum wage. I doubt if she’d get a proper translation for less than the lower quote though the upper one sounds relatively high. Obviously a freelance might be cheaper than an agency. The free translations are pretty good these days, so I don’t know why she’s even looked at purchasing software.