John Allison (6 February)
John Allison is Editor of Opera and Music Critic on The Daily Telegraph. From 1994-2005 he was a Music Critic on The Times, and from 2005-14 on The Sunday Telegraph. He has written for leading newspapers around the world, including the New York Times, and is a regular contributor to BBC Music Magazine. He is the author of two books (Edward Elgar: Sacred Music and The Pocket Companion to Opera), and has contributed articles to the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and New Penguin Opera Guide, as well as a chapter on 'Sibelius and the Kalevala' in Words on Music, Essays in Honour of Andrew Porter and surveys of the performance histories of Eugene Onegin and Norma in the new ENO Guides. He was also Editor of the Glyndebourne Festival programmes from 2000 to 2012, and has been a jury member at several international music competitions. He was a co-founder (with Harry Hyman) of the International Opera Awards in 2013. Born in 1965 in Cape Town, South Africa, he studied there in performance, musicology and composition for his BMus and PhD degrees, and while at university was also assistant organist at Cape Town Cathedral.