Joseph Horovitz was born 1926 in Vienna. His father Bela Horovitz was the founder of the Phaidon Verlag. His father had gone into partnership with an English publisher (Allen and Unwin) and thus avoided Aryanisation. At the time of the Anschluss Joseph’s parents were not in Austria and it was arranged that he and his sisters travelled first to Italy and then to Belgium. On the 15 March 1938 they came to the UK.
Soon after arriving Joseph was sent to a school for refugee children, run by Mr. and Mrs. Schindler, Regent's Park School. During the war the family moved to Oxford and Joseph first went to the evacuated UCS and then to the City of Oxford High School. He studied Music at New College Oxford and at the Royal College of Music. His first post was as Music Director of the Old Vic in Bristol. He later became a very well known composer (of ballets, concertos, and works for brass bands). One of his very popular works is ‘Captain Noah and his Floating Zoo’.