Photos by Lester Barnes
Alice McVeigh (pen name: Spaulding Taylor) was born in South Korea, of American diplomatic parents, and lived in Asia until she was 13, when the family returned to Washington D.C. She then fell in love with the cello, winning the Beethoven Society of Washington cello competition, and reaching the finals of the National Music Teachers Association Young Soloists national competition. After achieving a B.Mus. with distinction at the internationally acclaimed Jacobs School of Music, she came to London to study with Jacqueline du Pré and William Pleeth. Since then she has performed with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic and the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique all over Europe, America and the Far East.
Her first two contemporary novels – While the Music Lasts and Ghost Music – were published by Orion Publishing/Hachette in the late 90s, and her first play (Beating Time) put on at the Lewisham Theatre. (The film rights to her first book were also sold, to Channel 4, but Mozart in the Jungle got there first!) As well as performing, Alice has ghosted or edited over 200 books. She has also scribbled a witty guide to the orchestral profession: All Risks Musical, cartoons by Noel Ford. Her most recent novel, Last Star Standing, was published by Unbound Publishing under her pen name, Spaulding Taylor, on February 21st, 2021.
Alice is married to Professor Simon McVeigh, and lives in London. They have one daughter, who just graduated from the University of Oxford, and a second home, by the sea in Crete. Apart from fiction, Alice’s greatest enthusiasms involve playing chamber music, dachshunds and tennis. (She is a powerful but notably inaccurate tennis player, with the distinction of being ladies’ singles runner-up – seeming in perpetuity – at her VERY local tennis club.)