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John Suchet

With many years experience as a leading newsreader for ITV News and Five News, John Suchet has a natural talent as a speaker and host/facilitator.


About John Suchet

John Suchet draws upon this wealth of experience to deliver inspiring speeches on his television career, and is also a leading authority and published author on the life and works of the classical composer Beethoven.


John is one of the country’s best known television newscasters, for ITN for 17 years until 2004, then again for Channel Five in 2006. Before becoming a newscaster, John was a reporter for ITN, covering major events around the world. He has been honoured for both roles: Television Journalist of the Year 1986, and Television Newscaster of the Year 1996.

John began his career with Reuters news agency. In the summer of 1968 he was in Paris covering his first major story: the student riots which ultimately brought down President de Gaulle. After a brief spell with BBC TV News, he joined ITN in August 1972, intending to return to the BBC after a year. He stayed at ITN for the rest of his career.

John’s great passion away from the news is music, particularly the life and work of Beethoven. He began researching and writing the story of the great composer’s life in 1990. In the late 90’s his trilogy, The Last Master, was published to wide acclaim. The Daily Telegraph wrote: “This book is not for academics but for you and me and anyone moved by Beethoven’s music, and will probably do more to further understanding of the composer than any professorial paper.”

John began giving short talks about Beethoven’s life after the publication of his books. The talk developed, and he soon gave his first performance with Bernard Lanskey, Assistant Director of Music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, as piano accompanist.

Since then John has presented his show, Beethoven – The Last Master, accompanied by Bernard leading a piano trio, in more than 150 theatres and concert halls around the UK. BBC Television filmed John’s show at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds, and the film has been shown many times as part of the Open University on BBC 2. He has also performed at an international symposium in Beethoven’s home city, Vienna.

In January 2006 Classic FM commissioned John to write the second book in their series on the great composers, The Classic FM Friendly Guide to Beethoven.

In early 2005 John launched a new show about his career as a television journalist, “One More Shot, Bob”, accompanied by slides, recounting his amazing experiences covering major stories around the world, including the world’s first modern Islamic revolution, led by Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan – not to mention the pitfalls of broadcasting daily to millions of people.

In the autumn of 2005 he launched a new musical show about the Strauss family and Vienna, accompanied again by Bernard Lanskey and his musicians. “The Last Waltz” tells the extraordinary story of Johann Strauss, the tensions, rivalry and bitterness behind some of loveliest melodies ever composed, set against the terminal decline of the Habsburg Imperial Royal Family as World War One approaches.

In 2002 John wrote and presented a three-part series for BBC Radio 4, entitled “ Vienna, City of Music”, recorded entirely on location. The series was short listed by the BBC for a Sony radio award. In 2005 he was Series Consultant on BBC 2’s highly acclaimed television series, “The Genius of Beethoven”, and read from his books on BBC Radio 3’s ground-breaking “The Beethoven Experience”, a week in which every note composed by Beethoven was broadcast.

In December he wrote and presented a three-part series for Radio 4, entitled “The Legacy of Mozart”.

John has been honoured by his old university, the University of Dundee, which appointed him Honorary Doctor of Laws in 2000. In 2001 the Royal Academy of Music appointed him Honorary Fellow in recognition of his work on Beethoven, and in 2003 he was elected onto the Academy’s Governing Body.

Speech Topics

John Suchet, known to millions as a TV newscaster, brings to life the greatest composer of them all – Beethoven.

John Suchet will take you on a fascinating tour of the life, times and music of one of the greatest geniuses who ever lived. Live music enhances John Suchet’s inspiring performance.

“Skilful blend of words and music”
You will learn where Beethoven used to eat and drink, how he got his laundry done, and how his wide circle of loyal friends and patrons looked after him so that he could concentrate on giving the world great masterpieces.

An inspiring performance from John Suchet
John Suchet does more than give a talk. With a skilful blend of words and music he’ll take you to the heart of the man whose name will remain immortal and whose music will be played and heard always.

Booking Information

John Suchet News

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