The new head of CERN is a pianist

The new head of CERN is a pianist


norman lebrecht

November 05, 2014

Fabiola Gianotti, the new head of the CERN ‘big bang’ centre in Geneva and a world leader in the field of particle physics, is – we hear – an accomplished pianist who once considered a fulltime concert career.

fabiola gianotti

She is the first woman and the first Italian to hold this post at the very frontier of science.

Last year, the winner of the Nobel prize for medicine and physiology, Thomas Südhof, said he ‘owed it all’ to methods he had acquired from his bassoon teacher.

Like many eminent scientists from Albert Einstein onwards, Fabiola regards music as an essential part of her education, her intellect, her science and her civilisation.

The only people who fail to understand this are called politicians.

fabiola gianotti2



  • Marilyn Roth says:

    The late wonderful violinist and teacher Marylou Speaker Churchill would go through a laundry list of everything involved in a lesson — critical listening, observation, attention to detail, creativity, etc. etc. When finished she smiled a big smile and said “why, sometimes they even learn to play the instrument!”