The Baroness

The Baroness

The Search for Nica, the Rebellious Rothschild and Jazz's Secret Muse

By Hannah Rothschild

Vintage, Paperback, 9781101872338, 304pp.

Publication Date: December 2, 2014


Beautiful and spirited, Pannonica Rothschild, known as Nica, was born in 1913 to eccentric privilege and a storied family history. After marrying well, she settled into a French chateau to bear children and support her husband's war career. But when Nica heard "Round Midnight" by jazz composer Thelonious Monk, everything changed. She abandoned her marriage, found Monk in New York, and devoted herself to him and to other musicians, becoming the unsung philanthropist of the city's Jazz scene.
Hannah Rothschild has given twenty years to the quest of revealing who her great-aunt really was. Drawing on unpublished archival material, private family records and her own interviews, she has produced a fascinating portrait--part musical odyssey, part love story--that showcases a woman ahead of her time who dared to live as she wanted.

About the Author
Hannah Rothschild is a writer and director whose documentaries have appeared at film festivals including Telluride and Tribeca. She conceived and directed The Jazz Baroness, a film about her great-aunt and Thelonious Monk, which was broadcast by BBC and HBO in 2009. She has written for British Vanity Fair, Vogue, The Independent and The Spectator. She is vice president of the Hay Literary Festival and trustee of the National Gallery and Waddesdon Manor.