Last October, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) held public hearings on sexual abuse at UK specialist music schools. The inquiry primarily covers what are often called ‘historic’ incidents, from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. Allegations of sexual abuse at Chetham’s School of Music, in Manchester, first hit the news in 2013, when Michael Brewer, a choirmaster and former director of music at the school, was jailed for six years for indecently assaulting a pupil. She committed suicide days after testifying against him. Over the following months, a picture emerged of widespread abuse at UK music schools in the 1970s and 1980s.
Day 1: I taste year-still air. Although this is not my home, everything is exactly as it was. Day 2: Secrets fell out of a book this morning. Photos of my father, young. He grins by a statue in some old courtyard, hunches over in an armchair peering at papers. There were love letters dated last year to a woman I didn't know. For the rest of the day I traced clues, dates on receipts, his last path around the apartment. I wore his hat and his shoes.