Midsomer Murders (1997– )
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Master Class 

A gifted young pianist with emotional issues is in competition with other young talents for a scholarship in a prestigious private musical academy.


Renny Rye


Nicholas Martin (screenplay), Caroline Graham (based on characters by)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
John Nettles ... DCI Tom Barnaby
Jason Hughes ... DS Ben Jones
Jane Wymark ... Joyce Barnaby
Barry Jackson ... Dr Bullard
Kirsty Dillon ... DC Gail Stephens
Michael Maloney ... Simon Sharpe
Katherine Press ... Francesca Sharpe
Lydia Wilson ... Zoe Stock
Ian Puleston-Davies ... Terry Stock
Janet Dibley Janet Dibley ... Dawn Stock
Sylvestra Le Touzel ... Miriam Fielding
Frances Barber ... Constance Fielding
James Fox ... Sir Michael Fielding
Matthew James Thomas ... Orlando Guest
Richard Fleeshman ... Benedict Marsh


Teen-aged Zoe Stock, a brilliant pianist, is attending a music school run by the Fielding family when she believes she sees a woman drown herself in the river, having left her baby on the bank. When the police arrive there is nothing to support her claim but Barnaby recalls that a mystery woman died in identical circumstances eighteen years earlier. Her body was found by Catholic priest Father Gregory, outside whose church an attempt is made to kill Zoe. A lucrative prize awaits the young musician adjudged the best by the Fieldings and it is assumed that another student is responsible. Written by don @ minifie-1

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Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

6 October 2010 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Bentley Productions See more »
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Technical Specs





Aspect Ratio:

16:9 widescreen
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Did You Know?


Sylvestra Le Touzel plays Miriam Fielding in this episode. She previously played the role of Linda Marquis in episode 3.4, Midsomer Murders: Beyond the Grave (2000). See more »


[first lines]
Dawn Stock: I'm sorry to bother you, but how many students make it through to the next round?
Joyce Barnaby: It's usually a dozen for the winter school, and then three are chosen for the master class.
Dawn Stock: Thank you.
[to daughter]
Dawn Stock: Good luck, darling.
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Composed by Richard Wagner
[Played on piano by Sir Michael Fielding]
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User Reviews

29 October 2013 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

At a music school, a gifted piano student, Zoe Stock, thinks that she sees a woman drown after leaving her baby on the bank. She jumps in but doesn't see the woman, and there's no baby. Barnaby & Jones are called in, and though there is no proof that anything happened, Barnaby vaguely remembers an actual, similar drowning that took place about 18 years earlier. Back then, the body was found by a Catholic priest, Father Gregory.

Zoe is competing to participate in a master class run by the world-famous Sir Michael Fielding (James Fox); the school is administered by his daughters Miriam and Constance (Sylvestra Le Touzel and Frances Barber). Only three students from the current crop will be chosen, and when they are, Zoe is one of the three, along with Orlando (Matthew James Thomas), and Francesca (Katharine Press). The winner of the Fielding Prize is assured an international career.

When an attempt is made on Zoe's life, Barnaby investigates further, and then the bodies start falling. Is it the rejected student, who is still hanging around, responsible? Or is it someone else? The denouement of this story is bizarre, and you'll be trying to figure it out through the film. A dark story and an excellent one, with some well-drawn characters and excellent performances.

Highly recommended.

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