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Aitken, Laurel [real name Oliver Anthony Stephens] (1925–2005), singer, songwriter, and record producer, was born on 22 April 1925, in Jamaica, one of six children of a Jamaican father and a Cuban mother. His early years were spent in Havana, Cuba, but the family moved to ...

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Besch, Anthony John Elwyn (1924–2002), opera director, was born at 193 Chatsworth Road, Kilburn, London, on 5 February 1924, the son of Roy Cressy Frederick Besch, chartered accountant, and his wife, Annie Gwendolen, née Jones, both of 90 Fordwych Road, West Hampstead. He was educated at ...

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Farnon, Robert Joseph (1917–2005), composer and musical arranger, was born on 24 July 1917 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, the second son and third of four children in a musical family: his father, a clothier, played the violin, and his mother played the piano. He himself learned to play the violin, piano, percussion, and trumpet, while still young. He gained experience on radio as a teenager and became, at nineteen, lead trumpet in the ...

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Fletcher, Percy Eastman (1879–1932), composer and musical director, was born on 12 December 1879 in Handel Terrace, Curzon Street, Derby, the son of Alfred William Fletcher, professor of music, and his wife, Elizabeth Eastman. He was privately educated as a violinist, pianist, and organist, and having moved to ...

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Gillett, Charles Thomas [Charlie] (1942–2010), disc jockey and musicologist, was born on 20 February 1942 at 429 Marine Road, Morecambe, Lancashire, the elder son and second of three children of Anthony Walter Gillett (1912–1992), mechanical engineer and managing director of a light engineering firm, and his wife, ...

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Graham, Colin (1931–2007), opera director and librettist, was born on 22 September 1931 at 17 Fourth Avenue, Hove, Sussex, the son of Frederick Eaton Graham-Bonnalie (1897–1979), physician and medical author, and his first wife, Alexandra Diana Vivian (Anore), née Finlay (1909–1988). His parents divorced while he was still young and both subsequently remarried. Educated at ...

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Irving, (Kelville) Ernest (1877–1953), musical director and composer, was born on 6 November 1877 in Pound Hill, Godalming, the eldest child of Ashley Alfred Irving (b. c.1844/5, d. in or before 1898), ironmonger, and his wife, Emma Fenner (b. c...

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Morley, Angela [formerly Walter Morley Stott or Wally Stott] (1924–2009), composer and musical arranger, was born at 331 Kirkstall Road, Leeds, on 10 March 1924, the elder son of Albert Stott (1894–1933), a watchmaker and jeweller, and his wife, Ethel, née Chappell...

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Angela Morley (1924–2009) by Dennis Matthews, 1988 © reserved; by kind permission of Christine Parker

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Most, Mickie [real name Michael Peter Hayes] (1938–2003), singer and record producer, was born on 20 June 1938 at Louise Margaret Hospital, Aldershot, Hampshire, the son of Harold Victor Hayes, a sergeant (later regimental sergeant-major) in the Royal Artillery, and his wife, ...