BBC Music Magazine



Richard Baker Born 1925 Broadcaste­r

The first of a new breed of television personalit­ies in the 1950s, Richard Baker became a household name in the UK, reading the BBC news for 28 years from 1954. Originally hired by the BBC in 1950 to host The Third Programme, later Radio 3, Baker’s passion for classical music was to be a mainstay throughout his career. His voice became familiar to classical audiances through the Last Night of the Proms radio broadcasts and his regular appearance­s on TV’S Face the Music. His father, himself an amateur singer, encouraged piano lessons; however, it was to acting that Baker would be drawn while in his third year at Cambridge. His time there was interrupte­d by the War and he found himself serving in the Arctic aboard a minesweepe­r with the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve. His service, supporting the Russians, was recognised in 2015 with the Ushakov Medal. The time at sea also proffered a book, a biography of Vice Admiral Sir Gilbert Stephenson. Music was never far away, though, and in 1971 he narrated what remains one of the most popular recordings of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, with the New Philharmon­ia Orchestra under Raymond Leppard.

Levine Andrade Born 1954 Violinist, violist, conductor

As one of the founding members of the acclaimed Arditti Quartet, Levine Andrade played an influentia­l role promoting and performing contempora­ry music. Born in Bombay, Levine moved aged nine to England where he was awarded a scholarshi­p to the newly founded Yehudi Menuhin School. While there he found himself the subject of a BBC documentar­y, Life of a Child. Moving on to the Royal College of Music, he found time to work as a freelance musician and performed with both the LSO and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. It was his shared interest in 20th-century music that led, in 1974, to his cofounding the Arditti Quartet, with whom he played until 1990. After that, he establishe­d himself as one of the most respected performers and conductors working in London’s busy recording industry.

Also remembered…

The Russian bass Maxim Mikhailov (b1962) will be best remembered for the title role in Musorgsky’s Boris Godunov, which he performed in major opera houses across the globe. A familiar face at the Bolshoi Theatre from 1987, he also appeared in many recordings, including Rachmanino­v’s The Miserly Knight, conducted by Vladimir Jurowski. Sally Silver (b1967 ) excelled in bel canto repertoire, both on stage and in a series of fine recordings accompanie­d by Richard Bonynge on the piano. However, the South African soprano’s repertoire also extended to contempora­ry music, and she appeared in operas such as Thomas Adès’s Powder her Face and Jonathan Dove’s The Palace in the Sky.

 ??  ?? The voice of music: broadcaste­r Richard Baker in 1964
The voice of music: broadcaste­r Richard Baker in 1964

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