Friday, May 22, 2015

Pianist James Rhodes wins right to publish autobiography telling of abuse

An internationally renowned classical pianist has overturned a ban that had prevented him from publishing his autobiography detailing the sexual abuse he suffered as a child.

The supreme court’s decision on Wednesday to sweep aside the injunction that prevented the book from appearing was hailed as a milestone in the defence of free speech.

The author – who could previously be identified only by the cipher MLA – can now be named as James Rhodes, a self-taught musician who has released four chart-topping albums.

Rhodes’ memoir details the very serious assaults he suffered as a young boy and the way in which music has helped him to deal with the trauma. However, his ex-wife sought to prevent publication of key passages, arguing that they would have too distressing an impact on their 12-year-old son.

The pianist was at court for the ruling, accompanied by his second wife, Hattie, and schoolfriend Benedict Cumberbatch, the actor. His fight for the right to tell his story has been backed by writers including David Hare, Michael Frayn, William Boyd and Tom Stoppard.  (more...)

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