Martin Cullingford grew up in Lowestoft, Suffolk – the birthplace of Benjamin Britten – where at various times his musical experiences included playing in school orchestras and in two marching bands (the clarinet in one, the side drum in the other), and learning the guitar. His other teenage interests – unhelpfully, for one of the flattest parts of the country – were rock climbing and mountain biking. It’s also where he began his journalistic career, writing for the local newspaper, including as a theatre critic and editor of the music page. He then spent three years reading History at Girton College, Cambridge – with a substantial focus on the history of political thought and philosophy – during which time he also did a bit of acting (from Shakespeare to revues) and more journalism. Moving to London afterwards, where he got married, he initially worked as a financial journalist before joining Gramophone in 2002 as News and Online Editor, working his way up to, in 2011, Editor, then subsequently Publisher as well, and more recently still Editorial Director of Gramophone owner The Mark Allen Group’s wider music division. While some early hobbies remain in a varied form – indoor bouldering and playing guitar for a Sunday School – most of his free time is now spent helping introduce his daughter to the joys of the many musical and cultural experiences which continue so to enrich his own life.