October 4 – Charlton Heston (1923 – 2008)
One of the most iconic Hollywood actors in the history of film, Charlton Heston acted in over a hundred films in a span of sixty years.
He starred in multiple classics such as Ben Hur (for which he won an Academy Award for Best Actor), The Ten Commandments, Planet of the Apes, and The Agony and the Ecstacy.
Empire Magazine listed Mr. Heston as #28 on their list of the top 100 movie stars of all time. Unusually for a celebrity, he was conservative, strongly opposed abortion, and was the president of the NRA for five years. He also stayed married to his first wife – Lydia Clark – until his death.
Fun Fact: Charlton Heston spent three months learning how to drive a chariot for the chariot race in Ben Hur.
October 7 – Yo-Yo Ma (1955 – )
Yo-Yo Ma is a prolific cellist who started learning the cello at age four and started taking lessons at Julliard at age seven.
He has released over a hundred albums (nineteen of which were Grammy Award winners), and has received the Glenn Gould Prize, the Polar Music Prize, the J. Paul Getty Medal Award, the Vilcek Prize for Contemporary Music, and countless other awards.
Fun Fact: Yo-Yo Ma has personally performed for eight different U.S. presidents.
October 9 – John Lennon (1940 – 1980)
One of the most well-known songwriters of all time, John Lennon is most widely known as the co-frontman of the mega-popular Beatles in the ‘60s.
The songs from his songwriting partnership with Paul McCartney have become some of the most popular and most-covered songs of all time, and the Beatles as a group are definitely the most popular and are considered the most iconic group of the 1960s.
Fun Fact: John Lennon’s main hobby was painting, and in college he was a serious art student.
October 12 – Luciano Pavarotti (1935 – 2007)
Luciano Pavarotti is considered to be one of the best operatic tenors of the twentieth century, and he was an enormously popular opera singer all over the world.
Some of the audiences at his outdoor venues reached half a million, and it is predicted that the airing of his performance of La Boheme on Chinese television was watched by 250,000,000 viewers.
Mr. Pavarotti received a Grammy “Legend Award” in 1998 (an award which had only been given to eleven other artists previously), and in the same year the mayor of New York proclaimed a “Luciano Pavarotti Day” in his honor.
Fun Fact: Luciano Pavarotti organized an annual charity concert in his hometown called “Pavarotti and Friends,” at which he sang with several dozen different pop artists, including Jon Bon Jovi, Eric Clapton, Celine Dion, Joe Cocker, Meatloaf, and members of U2.
October 13 – Margaret Thatcher (1925 – 2013)
The leader of Britain’s Conservative Party, Margaret Thatcher was the first woman to be elected Britain’s prime minister.
She became the most renowned British politician since Winston Churchill, and was the longest continuously serving prime minister since 1827.
Throughout the ‘80s she made changes such as cutting social welfare programs and reducing trade union power. In 1992 Mrs. Thatcher was appointed to the House of Lords, receiving the title of Baroness Thatcher of Kesteven.
Fun Fact: As both had similar political ideas, Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan were faithful allies, and at Ronald Reagan’s funeral Baroness Thatcher said of him that he “sought to mend America’s wounded spirit, to restore the strength of the free world, and to free the slaves of communism.”
October 14 – Justin Hayward (1946 – )
Most well known as the frontman for the progressive rock group The Moody Blues, Justin Hayward started performing publicly at thirteen years old and is still touring today.
He has received multiple ASCAP awards for his songwriting, notably for the hit songs “Nights in White Satin” and “I Know You’re Out There Somewhere.”
As well as being a fantastic songwriter, Mr. Hayward also has a beautiful unique singing voice which was a great part in making the Moody Blues stand out from other groups of the time.
When not touring, Mr. Hayward lives in southern France with his wife of forty-eight years, Marie Hayward.
Fun Fact: As a teenager Justin Hayward reportedly collected walking-sticks, thought to have been inspired by The Lord of the Rings.