Barnaby Rayfield was born in Hampshire and studied German at Bristol University, along with subsidiary courses in theatre and European cinema. Passionately interested in Lieder and opera from childhood he gradually worked up through backstage jobs at college and university before directing productions for small touring opera companies, such as the London Opera Players, before going to British Youth Opera to assist on Don Giovanni. From 2007 to 2008 he was staff director for English Touring Opera working on operas as diverse as Susannah, Teseo and Anna Bolena. He eventually fulfilled his dream of producing a new version of the three Figaro operas (by Rossini, Mozart and Milhaud) for the Grimeborn opera festival in Dalston. Although no longer pursuing a directing career he recently directed a staged version of Jonathan Dove’s Ariel’s Songs. Since 2010, he has been a free-lance music critic, primarily of recorded music, for Fanfare magazine and Muso although he also reviewed live events for Concertonet. He currently works at the Royal Albert Hall in the Box Office and for several years has been responsible for briefing the in house staff on the Proms in terms of anniversaries and themes. Aside from music and CD collecting, Barnaby is equally interested in film, comedy, nature and travel.