John von Rhein

John von Rhein

Bio

Classical music critic of The Chicago Tribune since 1977.

Before coming to Chicago that year, he was classical music and dance critic for the Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal, from 1971 to 1977. He served as a music reviewer for the Hollywood Citizen-News from 1968 to 1971.

He has written on musical subjects for numerous national and international magazines and newspapers, including Opera magazine, Gramophone, American Record Guide, Opera News, Fanfare, Vanity Fair, Ovation, Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, and Opera Now. Also has contributed to websites including The Classical Review.

He has contributed an essay to the book “Lyric Opera of Chicago: Bravi” (Abbeville Publishing Group). He also has written liner notes for recordings on the Sony BMG, Sony Classical, Pro Arte and Stradivari labels.

He holds the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from DePaul University (2011). Other awards include the Peter Lisagor Award, Chicago Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (1998).

He served as director of the Music Critics Association of North America critics training institute at the Ravinia Festival in 1988.

Education:
California State University, Los Angeles: BA degree, music history and performance, 1970. Graduate-level course work in English and music until 1971.
University of California, Los Angeles: BA degree, English, 1967.
Pasadena City College, Pasadena, Calif.: AA degree, 1965.


John von Rhein was born on Sept. 10, 1945, in Pasadena, California, where he began studying the violin. He continued private study throughout his college and university years, in addition to playing violin in various academic ensembles including the UCLA Symphony under Mehli Mehta and the California State University Los Angeles String Ensemble.