10 great things John Suchet has done in his 10 years at Classic FM

30 June 2020, 21:25 | Updated: 1 July 2020, 08:39

Happy 10th Classic FM birthday to John Suchet!
Happy 10th Classic FM birthday to John Suchet! Picture: Classic FM / Getty

By Rosie Pentreath

This year marks John Suchet’s tenth as a weekly presenter on Classic FM. And what a decade it has been…

John Suchet became a mainstay at Classic FM a whole decade ago.

To mark 10 marvellous years – from a decade presenting our landmark morning show to energising our evenings with the new Classic FM Concert since May (and plenty of Beethoven in between) – here are 10 of John’s best Classic FM moments so far…

  1. John Suchet is announced as the presenter of Classic FM’s landmark weekday morning show

    An established newsreader (he was at ITV for over 30 years), John Suchet was announced as the host of Classic FM’s landmark weekday morning show in September 2010 – the third presenter of the slot in Classic FM’s history, taking over from Simon Bates.

    John has been bringing us brightly into the day for a decade, playing Hall of Fame favourites and brilliant new recordings up until May this year (2020), when Alexander Armstrong took the baton.

    John Suchet
    John Suchet. Picture: Classic FM
  2. John presents Classic FM Live, with fellow presenter Margherita Taylor

    Classic FM Live has been a mainstay of the Classic FM calendar for 20 years – in the safe hands of hosts John Suchet and his fellow Classic FM presenter, Margherita Taylor.

    John Suchet and Margherita Taylor present Classic FM Live
    John Suchet and Margherita Taylor present Classic FM Live. Picture: Matt Crossick / PA
  3. John has published several books for Classic FM

    Already an established author, John has brought his passion and incredible knowledge of classical music to Classic FM – including through his wonderful books Beethoven: The Man Revealed, Mozart: The Man Revealed, Tchaikovsky: The Man Revealed, Verdi: The Man Revealed and The Last Waltz: The Strauss Dynasty and Vienna.

    And, speaking of Strauss – it was brilliant to watch Strauss aficionado and King of the Waltz himself, André Rieu, give John a guided tour of Rome a few years back.

  4. We need to talk about Beethoven.

    You can’t say ‘John Suchet’ without also saying ‘Beethoven’, basically. The man’s obsessed. He has literally written the book on Beethoven. He has presented a history-making radio show about the man. And he even looks like the great composer.

    Which one’s which? John Suchet with his composer doppelgänger, Beethoven.
    Which one’s which? John Suchet with his composer doppelgänger, Beethoven. Picture: Classic FM
  5. John Suchet breaks his trombone out of the case given any opportunity

    John has rarely resisted the chance to brandish his trombone, and duet with the greats over the years at Classic FM.

    From trumpet virtuoso Tine Thing Helseth, to the star mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins – and playing on the hallowed stage of the Royal Albert Hall for Classic FM Live – he’s busked with the best of them.

    John Suchet accompanies Katherine Jenkins on the trombone.
    John Suchet accompanies Katherine Jenkins on the trombone. Picture: Classic FM

    And with those jazzy inflections, he’s often reminded us of someone...

    John Suchet, AKA Ron Burgundy
    John Suchet, AKA Ron Burgundy. Picture: Classic FM
  6. That time John’s brother, David Suchet, presented on Classic FM – and we fooled a nation

    Poirot himself once stood in for John Suchet and presented on Classic FM.

    We fooled the nation when we invited John’s brother, David, to host the morning show on a special one-time occasion – April Fools Day 2015 – and it took a while for ‘these little grey cells’ to really notice the difference...

    via Giphy
  7. John Down Under.

    In 2017, John swapped the cool climes of the Classic FM office for sunny South Australia, and presented his show from Down Under.

    As well as wonderful stories of Kangaroo Island, fine New World wines, and brilliant music-making in Australia, it was basically just a chance to tweet this (couldn’t help ourselves):

  8. John Suchet welcomes Their Royal Highnesses to Classic FM

    It was pretty iconic when John greeted His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales and Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall, and gave them a tour of the studio when they visited Classic FM.

    A few years later, and His Royal Highness would be back to appear in two very special shows for Classic FM – for one of which, he took the mic and presented himself.

    HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall meet presenter John Suchet in the Classic FM studio.
    HRH The Prince of Wales and HRH The Duchess of Cornwall meet presenter John Suchet in the Classic FM studio. Picture: Classic FM
    HRH The Prince of Wales in the Classic FM studio.
    HRH The Prince of Wales in the Classic FM studio. Picture: Classic FM
  9. John is the first presenter in radio history to have a 52-part series. And it’s Beethoven, of course.

    At the end of 2019, we announced John’s landmark series, Beethoven: The Man Revealed. A year-long series about Beethoven on the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth, it is the UK’s biggest ever radio series devoted to a single composer.

    We’re about halfway through and it’s brill... find out more Beethoven: The Man Revealed here.

    John Suchet to present ‘Beethoven – The Man Revealed’ for 52 weeks to mark the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth.
    John Suchet to present ‘Beethoven – The Man Revealed’ for 52 weeks to mark the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth. Picture: Classic FM / Getty
  10. No radio career should pass without a fine set of bloopers.

    Like any broadcasting legend, John Suchet has a few on-air bloopers to his name. And they are truly precious.

    John once called Mozart’s Horn Concerto No. 4 as a “horny”, and we’re just going to drop the mic with that. 🎤

    via Giphy

Happy 10th Classic FM birthday, John!

Listen to the Classic FM Concert with John Suchet every weeknight, from 8pm –  available across the UK on 100-102 FM, DAB digital radio and TV, at ClassicFM.com and on Global Player.