Lesson: THE GREAT PIANO SWINDLE (C1-C2)

12. What did Barry say?

a. What was Barry’s explanation? Do you believe him or not?

b. What is the meaning of little in these sentences from the video?

He made little money from the fraud and was never prosecuted, but many felt he’d got off lightly.

A long line of people have already had a go at getting Barry to confess, but with little success.

  • What is the difference between little money and a little money?

For answers, and for more on little and a little, check here.

c. Discuss:

  • Is it possible to tell from physical clues (body language; tone of voice) if somebody is lying?
  • Are there words that you should listen out for to know if someone is lying?
  • The narrator says “Barry has said that he borrowed small sections from other pianists’ recordings”. Isn’t this theft, not borrowing?
  • Supposing Barry is telling the truth here, should other musicians be sympathetic towards him?
  • How does this case compare to others in the arts, for example:
    • a rapper sampling a track from another band’s recording?
    • a book with a title taken from a poem?
    • a modern artist ‘reimagining’ a classical painting?

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