Hilary Finch was born in London. She read English and Music at the Universities of Exeter and Cambridge, before joining the staff of The Times in an editorial capacity in 1976. From 1981 she worked freelance, as a music critic and feature writer for The Times, also contributing for many years to Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine, and Opera magazine.
Other activities have included jury work for The Royal Society of Arts, Royal Philharmonic Society and BBC Music Magazine Awards, and the Wigmore Hall International Song Competition. Lecturing on cruises to Nordic lands, and presenting their music programmes has also provided diversion.
Hilary has been a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio 3, contributing features on song, in particular Lieder, to programmes such as CD Review, Building a Library, BBC Legends and In Tune. She has also made radio features on the musical cultures of Finland and Estonia, as well as a programme on Iceland, ‘Freezing Fire, Singing Stone’, which was nominated for a Sony award.
Since 1985 she has visited Iceland annually, sometimes several times a year, and has written widely on the country’s music, musicians, history and literature. In 2011 she was a guest at the official opening of Reykjavik’s new Mies van der Rohe Award-winning concert-hall, Harpa; and this summer took part in the HarpaInternational Music Academy.