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Things Musicians Don't Talk About

63. Koshka Duff - Abolishing the Police

This episode is dedicated to Koshka’s wonderful piano teacher, Niel Immelman, who sadly passed away since it was recorded - and who made it all possible.


TW// sexual violence and assault, physical assault, police brutality


Becca first came across today's guest when she stumbled upon her collection of essays, Abolishing the Police. Philosophy professor, Koshka Duff (University of Nottingham), was largely inspired to compile this collection of essays on policing, dissent and abolition after her own traumatic experiences with the police. In 2013, when studying a Masters in piano performance at the Royal College of Music, Koshka was arrested after offering legal advice to a teenager undergoing a racist stop and search. She describes how the police assaulted her and left her with physical and psychological damage that continued to impact her life long after the event: she suspended her studies and had to confront the devastating possibility that she may never play the piano again. Koshka was able to return for her final recital a year after the event, and set out on a mission to heal by 'making and making up music' with her band, Stolen Goods, and via a pain management course through the NHS. The injuries left her with chronic pain that she still deals with, though more now as a "companion, rather than always an antagonist."


Koshka's album featuring several tracks recorded at her final recital

CD liner notes

The Stolen Goods EP

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Things Musicians Don't Talk About is now supported by the Royal Society of Musicians!

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Editor: Kaileigh Eaton

Music: Katy Ehrlich

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