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Sleep by Max Richter, BBC Radio 3

Last night, my dreams had a haunting, beautiful soundtrack.

Max Richter’s SLEEP: at 8 hours long, it is the longest ever continuous broadcast by the BBC.

From midnight until 8am, I was huddled under the duvet as haunting strings and deep bass (so deep I felt rather than heard it) scored my subconscious thoughts.

As I drifted between sleep and wakefulness, it felt like a real shared experience. I thought of everybody else  listening in the same way and of the musicians creating the nocturnal magic. Then I was asleep – but I could still hear the music throughout.

I woke at 8am to the sunshine streaming through the window, feeling very emotional. Last night had been a real journey for me – I felt like I had lived many lives in 8 hours.

SLEEP  is the centrepiece of the BBC’s Why Music weekend and is a wonderfully  reflective counterpoint to a frantic world.

Max Richter says, “I think of SLEEP as an experiment into how music and the mind can interact in this other state of consciousness, one we all spend decades of our lives completely immersed in, but which is so far rather poorly understood. I consulted with the neuroscientist David Eagleman on how music can relate to the sleep state and have incorporated our conversations in the compositional process of the work.”

Read the full article: Max Richter explains what drove him to compose SLEEP.