Daniel Barenboim was born in Buenos Aires in 1942, educated in Rome and made his piano debut at the age of eight and as a solo pianist at the age of eleven with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. His musical tours have taken him all over the world and he has made regular appearances at the Bayreuth, Edinburgh, Lucerne, Prague and Salzburg festivals. In 1967 he married the cellist Jacqueline du Pré (who died in 1987). In 1988 he married Elena Bashkirova. He was musical director of the Paris Orchestra 1975-88, and he has been Music Director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and of the Berlin State Opera since 1992.
Peter Guralnick is one of popular culture's greatest biographers and his 2-volume biography of Elvis is widely regarded as definitive.Visit the website for more www.peterguralnick.com, join on Facebook at www.facebook.com/peterguralnickofficial and follow on Twitter at https://twitter.com/PeterGuralnick.
Little is known about the poet Homer but he is thought to have composed the Iliad in the second half of the eight century BC and according to tradition lived on the island of Chios in the east Aegean.
Charles Lamb was born in 1914, and went to sea as an apprentice with the Clan Line in 1930. He later served as a Midshipman in the RNR , and joined the RAF in 1935 to learn to fly. He transferred to the Fleet Air Arm in 1938, flew throughout the war, and was given a permanent commission in 1945. He remained active in naval and public affairs until his death in 1981.
Nick Mason was a founder member of Pink Floyd as drummer/percussionist. He is the only member of the band to survive from its foundation and has played on every Pink Floyd album. He has produced music for TV commercials and played and produced several albums for other bands. His solo album NICK MASON'S FICTICIOUS SPORTS was released in 1981. His other passion is motor cars and he has taken part in the Le Mans 24-hour race. For years he has accumulated images and memorabilia associated with the band with a view to writing their definitive history.
Allan Massie is the author of seventeen highly praised novels, as well as non-fiction works on Muriel Spark, a study of twelve emperors of ancient Rome, a history of crime in 19th-century Edinburgh and the acclaimed Glasgow: Portraits of a City. Born in Singapore in 1938, he was brought up in Aberdeenshire and educated at Glenalmond School and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he read history. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and has been a judge of the Booker Prize. He is also a journalist contributing to the Scottish and English press. He is married, has three children and lives in the Scottish Borders.
Stephen Mitchell is a bestselling translator. His translation of Gilgamesh sold over 800,000 copies in the States and was described by Harold Pinter as 'a revelation'. He also received great acclaim for his translations of the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao Te Ching, Rilke's Sonnets to Orpheus and the Book of Job. He was educated at Amherst College, the Sorbonne and Yale University.
After a brief period at the Royal College of Art in London, Gerald Scarfe established himself as a satirical cartoonist, working for Punch and Private Eye during the early 60s. He has had many exhibitions worldwide, including New York, Osaka, Montreal, Los Angeles, Sydney, Melbourne, Chicago and London, and 50 one-man shows. He has designed the sets and costumes for plays, operas and musicals in London, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and New Zealand; written, directed and appeared in many live action and documentary films for BBC and Channel 4; and published many books of his work. Scarfe has been political cartoonist for the London Sunday Times for over 40 years, and has worked for The New Yorker for 17 years. His work regularly appears in many periodicals. Gerald Scarfe received a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours 2008. He has had a long association with Pink Floyd - as the designer and director of animation for the Floyd live show Wish You Were Here in 1974, for The Wall between 1970-73 and for Roger Waters' The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking in 1984.
SUNDAY TIMES journalist Michael Smith was the defence correspondent of the DAILY TELEGRAPH for many years. He is a former member of the British Army's Intelligence Corp and lives in Henley with his wife and family.Michael Smith is the Defence Correspondent of the Sunday Times. A former member of the Army Intelligence Corps, Smith has reported on all Britain's recent wars and broken a number of important stories.
Kevin Wilson has spent most of his working life as a staff journalist on British national newspapers, including the Daily Mail and latterly the Daily and Sunday Express. He is married with three grown-up sons and a daughter.