Tony Hall, Baron Hall of Birkenhead
|The Right Honourable
The Lord Hall of Birkenhead
|16th Director-General of the BBC|
2 April 2013 – incumbent
|Preceded by||Tim Davie (acting)
(till November 2012)
|Born||Anthony William Hall
3 March 1951
Birkenhead, Wirral, England
|Spouse(s)||Cynthia, Lady Hall|
|Alma mater||Keble College, Oxford|
He was formerly Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, from 2001 until March 2013, having spent his earlier career at the BBC, where he became Director of News in 1993. Hall became a crossbench member of the House of Lords on 22 March 2010.
Hall was born in Birkenhead, Cheshire, England, in 1951, the son of a bank manager. He was educated at King Edward's School Birmingham, Birkenhead School, and Keble College, Oxford, where he studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE).
After graduating from Oxford University, Hall joined the BBC as a trainee in 1973, initially working in the Belfast newsroom. He later worked as producer on Today, The World at One, The World Tonight, and PM. He became editor of the 9 O'Clock News at the early age of 34 and was appointed director of BBC News and Current Affairs Television in 1990 and, combining TV and radio, became director of News in 1993. He was Head of Current Affairs between 1996 and 2001. Among his career achievements are the launch of BBC Parliament, Radio 5 Live, BBC News 24, and BBC News Online. In 1999 he was an unsuccessful candidate for the position of Director General of the BBC.
Royal Opera House career
Tony Hall became Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House in April 2001. He set up ROH2, a department devoted to supporting new artists and developing new audiences. Since then, he set up new initiatives to widen access to the Opera House - including big screen relays to locations across the UK, Paul Hamlyn matinees, and other low-price ticket schemes.
In 2007, he oversaw the ROH's purchase of Opus Arte, a ballet and opera DVD/Blu-ray production and distribution company. As a Royal Opera House subsidiary, Opus Arte has relaunched its website as an online classical music retailer, selling both digital and physical products from across all the major record labels.
Between 2010 and 2011 his salary increased from £165,000 to £205,000, making him the highest-paid Chief Executive of any charity in the UK. His emoluments for management of the Royal Opera House exceeded £390,000 per annum in the years ending 29 August 2010 and 2011 respectively.
Hall was the inaugural chair of the industry-led sector skills council, Creative & Cultural Skills, a post he held between 2004 and 2009. The sector skills council introduced the first formal creative apprenticeships; won government approval to build a state-of-the-art National Skills Academy for backstage skills located with the Royal Opera House production park in High House Purfleet in Thurrock, Thames Gateway; and maintains a careers advice and guidance website called Creative Choices.
He was chair of the Music and Dance Scheme Advisory Board, and led a Dance Review for the Department for Education and Skills resulting in an additional £5 million awarded for dance education. He was a member of the Management Committee of the Clore Leadership Programme until 2011. He was on the Culture and Creative Advisory Forum panel for the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and was Chair of the Theatre Royal Stratford East until 2009.
He has been an Honorary Visiting Fellow of Journalism at City University, a member of the Regeneration Through Heritage Steering Group, a board member for Race for Opportunity, a board member for Learndirect, and was a member of the Council for Brunel University. Until May 2000 he was Chair of the Royal Television Society. In April 2007, in the wake of the 2007 Iranian seizure of Royal Navy personnel, he was asked to inquire into the MOD's media strategy. He was appointed to the board of the British Council in 2008.
In July 2009, he was asked by the Government and Mayor of London to set up and chair a board to direct the Cultural Olympiad, and also joined the Board of the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games.
Hall has been a Trustee of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation since 2011, and was appointed Deputy Chairman of Channel 4 in 2012, a post he was obliged to relinquish when becoming Director General of the BBC.
Honours and peerage
Hall was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) by Queen Elizabeth II in January 2006. In September 2009 he was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Literature (Hon DLit) by Goldsmiths, University of London, and is an honorary Fellow of Keble College, Oxford. The Chartered Management Institute awarded him the 2010 Gold Medal Award for outstanding achievement.
In February 2010 it was announced that Hall was to become a Life Peer, and on 19 March 2010 he was created Baron Hall of Birkenhead, of Birkenhead in the County of Cheshire. Three days later he was introduced to the House of Lords where he sits on the crossbenches.
Hall is the author of King Coal: Miners, Coal and Britain's Industrial Future (Penguin Books, 1981) and of Nuclear Politics: The History of Nuclear Power in Britain (Penguin Books, 1986).
- John Plunkett "BBC director general Lord Hall to take charge on 2 April", The Guardian, 25 January 2013
- "Royal Opera House appoints Tony Hall successor", BBC News, 19 March 2013
- Philipson, Alice (23 November 2012). "Profile: Lord Hall, the new BBC director -general". The Telegraph (London). Retrieved 23 November 2012.
- Davies, Caitlin (7 June 2007). "My Way: Tony Hall, CBE, chief executive of the Royal Opera House". The Independent (London). Retrieved 25 May 2010.
- British Council, Tony Hall. Accessed 20 November 2012
- BBC News, Profile: Tony Hall, 22 November 2012. Accessed 22 November 2012
- BBC News: Profile, Tony Hall, 14 May 1999. Accessed 20 November 2012
- Bob Williams "BBC confirms Tony Hall to be appointed new Director-General", The Independent, 22 November 2012
- Channel 4, BBC's Tony Hall installed as new director general, 2 April 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2013
- BBC News, BBC director general Tony Hall 'confident' about future, 2 April 2013. Retrieved 2 Apeil 2013
- Royal Opera House, Tony Hall. Accessed 20 November 2012
- The Stage, Royal Opera House buys DVD company, 30 May 2007. Accessed 20 November 2012
- Higgins, Charlotte (30 November 2009). "Tony Hall – the arts' Mister Fix-it". The Guardian (London).
- Royal Opera House, Trustees' report and consolidated financial statements 2010-2011. Accessed 20 November 2012
- Creative & Cultural Skills. Accessed 8 February 2010
- National Skills Academy. Accessed 8 February 2010
- Creative Choices. Accessed 8 February 2010
- House of Lords Appointments Commission (5 February 2010). "New non-party-political peers". Retrieved 6 February 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 31 December 2005.
- The London Gazette: . 12 February 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 24 March 2010.
- Lords Hansard text for 22 March 2010, retrieved on 24 March 2010
- Profile on UK Parliament site
- Profile at Debretts
- Parliamentary voting record
- Profile of Tony Hall by Tash Shifrin, The Guardian, 24 September 2003
- 2005 recorded BBC interview "...bringing opera to the people?"
- 2002 recorded BBC interview with regard to ROH and public funding
- 2001 article on taking the ROH job
- The Opus Arte website
- The Royal Opera House website
- Debretts People of Today