Kenneth Loveland : 1915 - 1998

Music Critic

KENNETH LOVELAND was one ot the senior figures working in the fields of music criticism, broadcasting and talking about music (lecturing was a word he hated).

It follows that he was a man of many parts, with a fund of musical reminiscences that made for highly entertaining evenings, illustrated by records.

He was well-known for his regular articles in the Times, Opera Magazine, Country Life, Musical Times, South Wales Argus and other publications. His reputation was as wide abroad as it was in Britain, since for many years he had covered such festivals as Salzburg, Vienna, Lucerne, Munich, Holland, Montreux, Verona and others, while he was engaged regularly in writing about new productions at such famous opera houses as Milan's La Scala, the Vienna State, the Bavarian State Opera at Munich, the Hamburg Opera, etc.
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As a broadcaster he was equally well-known. His weekly music magazine Opus 9 o'clock was intended for listeners in Wales, but quickly attracted a regular public in the rest of the United Kingdom and even abroad. He broadcasted regularly on the BBC's World Service, and listeners to Radio 4's Kaleidoscope would have known him as a familiar voice.

His Musicians in Conversation series of 60 minute profiles has been running for many years on Radio Telefis Eireann, and has featured many of the world's top musicians, among them Menuhin, Rubinstein, Cobbi, de los Angeles, Curzon, Szeryng, Solti, Arrau and numerous others. This series gave him a unique opportunity to work closely with the greatest artists and anecdotes resulting from this and from his international work spiced his music club evenings.

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Informality was the keynote of these. Kenneth Loveland talked passionately about his pet subjects, but believed that the starch should be taken out of music, and that such evenings should be fun. This made him an extremely popular presenter of such programmes wherever he went.

Asked about his favourite music, he would probably have replied "Nearly all of it", but would admit a particular preference for Mozart and Elgar, Dvorak and Debussy, Verdi and Viennese operetta. This wide taste was reflected in the music he picked for his club evenings, or late night shows at the leading British festivals, where he often appeared.

Born in Sheerness, Isle of Sheppey, October 12th 1915. In 1933 he joined the weekly paper Sheerness Times as cub reporter and worked on weekly papers in Kent and Home Counties until World War 2.

Being a passionate anti-Nazi he volunteered for the army in September 1939. He served with the British, Canadian and Czechoslovak forces.He took part in the Normandy Invasion and in campaigns in France, Belgium, Holland and the Rhine Crossing. He was mentioned in despatches. Discharged from the British Army in November 1945 whilst in Germany.
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Seen here with friend and conductor,
John Georgiadis

Kenneth resumed his journalistic career with the Luton News ,also working as a free-lance journalist before accepting an appointment as Assistant Editor of the South Wales Daily Argus in April 1949. He became Editor of the South Wales Daily Argus in April 1951, and resigned in September 1970 to concentrate on Music Criticism and Travel Writing.

During his time at the South Wales Argus Kenneth held the following positions :President of the Guild of British Newspaper Editors 1963 Chairman of the National Council for the Training of Journalists 1967.

He was a member of the National Council of the Newspaper Society for many years.

Kenneth was a regular contributor to the Arts pages of The Times for close on 30 years,covering productions in the principal European Opera Houses and European Festivals,Holland, Salzburg, Vienna, Lucerne etc. He was also a regular contributor to The Musical Times and Music and Muscians during this period, writing extensively on foreign travel, and was area editor to the Fodor Guide to Switzerland.

In 1970 he was awarded the Golden Statue of Vienna for an article on Beethoven which appeared in The Times, and in the same year was made a Cavaliere by the President of Italy, and was granted permission by H.M the Queen to use this title.

In 1977 he was awarded the Queen's Jubilee Medal for services to the arts and in 1986 Kenneth was installed as Honorary Master of Music of the University College of Wales in Swansea.

Kenneth served on the Welsh Arts Council from 1960 - 1972, and was Chairman of their Recordings Panel.

He was one of the main programme annotators for The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Hexagon in Reading, St. David's Hall in Cardiff and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. He also wrote programme notes for other orchestras. He had also done a great deal of broadcasting in his life, his main programmes being - Musicians in Conversation for Radio Telefis Eireann and Opus 9 o'clock for Radio 4 Wales, and made many contributions to Kaleidoscope and the BBC World Service.

His musical memories extended over almost half a century. His work left little time for hobbies, but he followed soccer and cricket (with particular interest in the fortunes of Kent), both of which he had played, and he also enjoyed cooking and the countryside.

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