Presenters A – B


Stephen Aspeling
Spling Aspeling Picture croppedStephen Aspeling, better known as “Spling,” has turned a lifelong passion into a full-time pursuit, reviewing, writing and judging film for a host of South African websites, radio stations, magazines and movie events.


Lynn Baker
Lynn Baker Picture croppedAfter 20-odd years in the corporate world – first with Barclays Bank and then with Old Mutual – Lynn subsequently followed her heart and made her entrance into community broadcasting in 2002… initially with Fine Music Radio (FMR) and then with Radio CCFm (Cape Community Fm).

With her passion for theatre (having been involved in amateur drama for many years) and communication (reading, writing and public speaking – she is a Competent Toastmaster/Competent Leader), she started off doing news and then hosting a women’s programme. From 2004 till 2012, Lynn presented and produced a weekday magazine-style programme on Radio CCFm – during which she conducted interviews with individuals, companies and organisations ..… with issues ranging from personal stories, to health/nutrition, entrepreneurship, social, parenting and civic (amongst others) with the intention to keep her listening audience informed, educated and (yes, sometimes) entertained as well!

She has remained the Monday evening news anchor for FMR and now also hosts a programme called “Jazz at Sunset”, which airs on alternate Saturdays (17h00 – 18h00).

Lynn made her community television debut in 2008 (in a show called Open Studio) on Cape Town TV (CTV) and in 2010 was approached to host a few episodes of a new NGO programme called “A Better Place”.

Besides having been invited to serve on the judging panel for the BWA (Business Women’s Association) in Cape Town in 2008, she’s also been an adjudicator (2008 and 2009) for the Anglo American/Sowetan Young Communicators (Regional) Awards for high schools and subsequently received an invitation from Exclusive Books to be one of the judges for the 2010 Boeke Prize.

She is now involved on a full-time basis in her media company (MEDIA RENDEZVOUS) – – which she launched in 2009 and which enables her to incorporate everything she currently loves doing.

Diederick Basson

Diederick Basson Picture

Diederick Basson studied under Danie Smit, Wim Viljoen, Boudewijn Scholten and Pieter de Lange at the DF Malan High School in Bellville and the Universities of Pretoria, Stellenbosch and South Africa. He obtained a Masters Degree in Music at the University of Stellenbosch and holds licenciates in Performance, Teaching and Church Music (Organ), obtained cum laude. In 1997 he furthered his studies under the late Ewald Kooiman, then Professor of Organ at the Free University of Amsterdam, specialising in the interpretation and performance of French and German Baroque music. In May 2016 he received his PhD in Music from the North-West University (Potchefstroom).

Diederick is Director of Music at Somerset College, part-time lecturer at Stellenbosch University, chairman of the Stellenbosch Eisteddfod and member of the South African Academy of Science and Arts. In 2013 he was the co-author of school textbooks, published by Oxford University Press.


Willem Bester
Willem Bester Picture croppedWillem Bester starts his music career as a member and soloist of the Tygerberg Children’s Choir. As boy soprano he is the winner of a nation-wide contest as “Boy with the Golden Voice”. He also participates in numerous Capab productions, such as Hans Roosenschoon’s Does the Noise in My Head Bother You? , Péter Louis van Dijk’s The Selfish Giant, and Bizet’s Carmen. In high school he is a category winner at the Roodepoort and Tygerberg International Eisteddfodau, and is also a member of the Western Cape Youth Orchestra as trombonist. He receives Unisa grade VIII certificates in piano and trombone (with honours), participates in the singing category of the ATKV Prelude music competition, and is selected to participate in the National High School Music Competition in the brass category.

In 1995 Willem receives an FAK bursary for undergraduate music study and, later the same year, is awarded an academic merit scholarship for his BMus studies at the University of South Africa. In 2001 one of his compositions is performed at a “sound installation” during the Stellenbosch Woordfees, and he is also invited to attend master classes in choral direction presented by Prof. Kåre Hanken from Norway. For the past fifteen years, Willem has been freelancing as an arts critic for Die Burger and the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival’s Krit, and since 2010, he is a presenter of and contributor to programmes for Fine Music Radio. He has performed as vocal soloist in concert works such as Magnificat and the St Matthew’s Passion by J. S. Bach, Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s The Creation, Karl Jenkins’s The Armed Man, Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, Mozart’s Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Rossini’s Stabat Mater, and Saint-Saëns’s Oratorio de Noël in Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, and Stellenbosch. He was part of The Haydn Project of St Michael and All Angels, commemorating the composer’s death in 2009. Since then, Willem passed the Unisa grade VIII singing examination with distinction and premièred Roelof Temmingh’s Te Deum for choir and tenor solo as part of the composer’s 65th birthday celebrations. He has worked with the conductors Acáma Fick, Corvin Matei, Barry Smith, Kåre Hanken, Louis van der Watt, Alexander Fokkens, and Arjan Tien. He regularly performed as soloist with Schola Cantorum Stellenbosch, part of the choral conducting programme of Stellenbosch University. He is a member of the Cape Consort, a group of musicians specialising in the historically informed performance practice of early music, and also of the new Cape Soloists Choir. Willem was a voice student of André Howard and Minette du Toit-Pearce, and currently studies with Colin Lee.

After being employed in the IT industry for eight years, Willem returned to full-time university studies in 2003 and, after undergraduate studies in pure mathematics and computer science, received the degree MSc (Computer Science) cum laude at Stellenbosch University. He currently lectures computer science and scientific computing at this university, and at the same time, is pursuing a PhD in computer science, focusing on software verification, automata theory, and formal methods and languages. He has also presented postgraduate seminars in music and film reviewing at the Department of Journalism of Stellenbosch University.

Dirk Binnemann
Dirk Binnemann Picture croppedDirk Binneman presents Winding Down on Wednesdays. He has been a FMR presenter since 2001. Dirk is a born Capetonian, but grew in the Karoo (towns you won’t even know!) and after studying in Bloemfontein and Stellenbosch settled in Cape Town. Dirk’s love for classical music only really started at university where he sang in several a cappella choirs. This triggered a love for the voice as instrument. In Cape Town he has sang in the ad hoc choir of Cape Town Opera in numerous productions, Philharmonia Choir, Stellenbosch Camerata, in ensembles Just Friends and Quintessence, and since 2009 he has been a proud member of the Cape Town Chamber Choir. ‘My musical taste is quite eclectic. And it has also changed over the years … moving away from the standard repertoire and staple performers to that which makes me sit upright and listen anew. Music has to make me feel!’ He works for the education department – first as a teacher and now as producer. He lives in Observatory with his partner and their cat, Bella.


Amanda Botha

amanda-botha-jpegAanbieder van Boekkeuse, derde Woensdag elke maand om 13h05, en aanbieder van kunstenaarsonderhoude op Kaapse Kalender. Sy het in 2001 as kinder- en jeugboekresensent by Boekkeuse begin en is die aanbieder daarvan sedert Januarie vanjaar. Sy is ‘n joernalis en skrywer van biografieë van kunstenaars, skrywers, politici en het selfs al twee boeke oor rugby gepubliseer.

Haar agtergrond is in die kuns- en literêre wêreld. Sy was in teater (opera, ballet en drama), televisie (dokumentêre filmnavorser en onderhoudvoerder) en by verskeie kunsfeeste (kunskurator en literêre gesprekke) werksaam gewees. Sy tree op as kunsadviseur en is in hierdie hoedanigheid betrokke by verskeie ondernemings. Sy is ook die literêre eksekuteur van die digters, Sheila Cussons en I L (Izak) de Villiers, en die skrywer Audrey Blignault. Sy het verskeie bekronings vir haar werk ontvang. Andersinds is sy voltyds met haar skryfprojekte besig.


Gorry Bowes Taylor
Gorry Bowes Taylor Picture croppedGorry Bowes Taylor has spent most of her life buried under books, and, when she throws her toys out of the cot, books are the last to go. After the bliss of Enid Blyton came 20 years as Books Editor on the Cape Argus , and her unique and prestigious Literary Lunches. Happily she heads a team of seven slightly whacky, highly intelligent, inspiring and articulate reviewers who choose their books for FMR BOOK CHOICE with delicacy and dedication. Older (much) and wiser (not much) since her coddled cot days, she now goes to bed with just one author at a time.

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Lorraine Braid
Lorraine_1Loraine presents “Midday Concert” on Fridays 12:00-13:00, “Klankpalet” on alternate Saturdays 18:00-20:00 and various “Composer of the Week” and “Great Interpreters” programmes.

My name is Lorraine Braid. I have been a journalist since I left school a long time ago – apart from when I was raising four children and worked for a couple of years as a church secretary! I have covered just about everything – including horseracing and wrestling – but spent most of my news-gathering years reporting on the comings and goings of politicians. This included 11 years in the Press Gallery in Parliament spanning the 90?s. I retired in 2002 but am back in the news world again, this time translating and proof reading.

For reasons unbeknown to me I am passionate about Italy – the country, the lifestyle, the language, the people and, naturally, the food! I have made several trips to the country and spent time here and in Italy studying the language and the cuisine. A highlight was spending a month at language and cookery school in Siena in 2000. There is not much opportunity to practise my halting Italian, but the cooking is another matter – I revel in working out menus and then cooking them for my friends.

My other passion is music. No, I do not have a musical background, am not a musician nor can I read a note of music – which makes it all the more fascinating for me. I have been presenting Midday Concert on  Fridays, plus several stints of newsreading and various evening programmes, since February 2007 – and I simply love it! The research required for the specialist programmes presents a wonderful opportunity for me to learn more about composers and their music.

Melanie Bruce
Melanie Bruce Picture croppedBeing accepted as a presenter by FMR could, I suppose, be seen as the realisation of a childhood ambition! How? Well, at the tender age of 15, I wrote a letter to Lourenço Marques Radio asking to be an apprentice disc jockey. LM Radio never replied to my letter! I wonder how the course of my life would have turned out if they had said yes? So, imagine my delight, in the autumn of my years, when Rodney agreed to give me the Matinée slot every second Friday! Everything certainly does come to those who wait.

After that fruitless attempt to hit the airwaves and having to overcome a huge disappointment in my teenage years, I eventually obtained an English degree and taught teenagers for many years, the last 28 years being at Springfield Convent School in Wynberg, where I was first Principal and then Headmistress until I retired at the end of 2010.

Not playing a musical instrument, I represent that very important, essential, other half of the musical world – the listeners. I was born into a very musical family, where my mother taught music almost until her death at aged 84 and my father, who didn’t play for long stretches of time, could nevertheless sit down at the piano and give a rollicking account of “Roll out the Barrel”!

I am married to David and we have three sons and five granddaughters. A little grandson is on his way, due to arrive in June.

Apart from my love of music, I enjoy theatre, books, walking and wine, as well as my rather late introduction to the world of golf. All my life I have been steeped in music of all kinds. I love it and hope to increase my involvement with Fine Music Radio.

Melanie presents Matinée on alternate Fridays, Midday Concert on alternate Wednesdays and also some Composers of the Week slots.
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