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Desert Island Discs with Lawrence Dallaglio

Lawrence Dallaglio
Image by fat dad via Flickr

Desert Island Discs is indeed a very interesting programme, even more so when they are ready to outcast interesting people, or rather people that I find interesting. In more occasions than none I end up learning something new about the guest. If you don’t know what Desert Island Discs is, I explained it briefly in a previous post.

This was certainly the case with Lawrence Dallaglio in the latest episode of the BBC Radio4 programme. I indeed was aware of Lawrence being a very successful rugby player (flanker or number 8) for London Wasps, the only club he played for, and a former captain for England. Dallaglio was one of the key players of the England team that won the Rugby Worldcup in 2003. What I didn’t know for example was the fact that he once sang backing vocals for Tina Turner for the song “We don’t need another hero”; and by the way this was NOT one of his chosen pieces of music. So how did this happen? Well, apparently while being a student in the King’s House School, he sang in the choir and his music teacher was quite involved in the music industry. Also, as part of the same choir, Dallaglio sand a the wedding of Andrew Lloyd Weber.

England Rugby Union Player Lawrence Dallaglio
Image via Wikipedia

Lawrence has a very interesting background, his father (Vincenzo) is Italian and his mother (Eileen) is half Irish. He remarked that this makes a dangerous combination for an English man, as it makes him not be afraid of showing what he thinks. His parents made efforts to get both Lawrence and his sister Francesca into public school and so he was admitted to Ampleforth College, one of the leading Roman Catholic boarding schools in England.

One of the turning points in Dallaglio’s life was the tragic death of his sister Francesca in 1989. She died in the Marchioness disaster at the age of 19. It was quite clear how much he was (and is) affected by this, re recounted how he was supposed to be with her at the time, but he ended up not going. It can be said that these events changed his life. He ended up joining Wasps as a manner of concentrating on something else and indeed he succeeded. Nonetheless, he admits that rugby took over other important aspects of his life as he became to driven by it.

His choices of music were quite good:

  1. Eddy Grant – Walking on sunshine
  2. Michael Jackson – Don’t stop ’til you get enough
  3. The Beatles – A hard day’s night
  4. The Police – Walking on the Moon
  5. Bob Marley – One love
  6. Dexys Midgnight Runners – Come on Eileen
  7. Oasis – Champagne supernova
  8. Peter Sarstedt – Where do you go my lovely? (his final choice to take to the island)

His book of choice was Ripley’s World by the former England rugby player Andy Ripley and he quoted from him the following phrase: “You can earn a living from what you get but you only get a life from what you give. Take it from me baby, giving is always best.” Finally, I really liked the luxury he decided to take with him to the desert island: Marmite (yoohoo!!)