Rattle inducted into Order of Merit in New Year’s Honours

- 3 January 2014

Order of Merit: Sir Simon Rattle Photo: Simon Fowler

Order of Merit: Sir Simon Rattle
Photo: Simon Fowler

Sir Simon Rattle and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies lead a host of classical music figures recognised in the 2014 New Years Honours list.

Sir Simon has been made a member of the Order of Merit. One of the most prestigious honours awarded, membership of the order is limited to 24 people personally selected by HM the Queen ‘to individuals of great achievement in the fields of the arts, learning, literature and science’.

With his tenure as artistic director of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra soon drawing to a close, the award highlights Rattle’s international standing and will only intensify hopes of a return to the UK. He previously received a CBE in 1987 and a knighthood in 1994.

The list also saw Sir Peter Maxwell Davies made a Companion of Honour for outstanding achievements in music. The accolade marks the beginning of a landmark year for the composer as his decade-long appointment as Master of the Queen’s Music comes to an end, his 10th symphony is premiered and he celebrates his 80th birthday. He joins fellow composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle and mezzo-soprano Dame Janet Baker in the order.

The Order of Merit badge, to which Sir Simon Rattle is entitled © Buckingham Palace

The Order of Merit badge, to which Sir Simon Rattle is entitled
© Buckingham Palace

Other figures in the classical music world honoured were pianist Stephen Hough and opera director John Copley, who were awarded the CBE in recognition of their services to music and opera respectively. Hough’s honour comes as he prepares for a US concert tour while Copley’s well-known production of La bohème receives its 26th revival and celebrates the 40th anniversary of its premiere at the Royal Opera House later this year.

Loretta Tomasi, who is standing down after 10 years as chief executive of English National Opera, received an OBE, as did crossover mezzo-soprano Katherine Jenkins. Also awarded an OBE was music writer and librettist Paul Griffiths for services to music lterature and composition. Griffiths’ latest work, Let Me Tell You &#8210 a collaboration with Danish composer Hans Abrahamsen &#8210 is currently on a European tour.

It was also an important honours list for the people and organisations that support and nurture classical musicians as well as promote the relevance of classical music. Among those recognised in this area were David Sulkin, chief executive of the Musicians Benevolent Fund, and Gillian Humphreys, founder and artistic director of the Concordia Foundation, who both received an OBE.

Marios Papadopoulos, founder and music director of Oxford Philomusica, received an MBE.

Order of Merit
Sir Simon Rattle, CBE

Order of the Companions of Honour
Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, CBE. Composer and conductor. For services to Music.

Dr Mary Collette Bowe. Chair, Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music and Chair, Ofcom. For services to Media and Communications.

Carlos Acosta. Ballet Dancer. For services to Ballet
John Copley. Opera director. For services to Opera.
Stephen Hough. Pianist. For services to Music.

Paul Griffiths. For services to Music Literature and Composition.
Lady Patricia Hobson, MBE. For services to Ballet and Philanthropy.
Ms Gillian Humphreys. Founder and Artistic director, The Concordia Foundation. For services to Music.
Miss Katherine Jenkins. Mezzo-soprano. For services to Music and for charitable services.
David Sulkin, Chief executive, Musicians Benevolent Fund. For services to the Arts, Education and Charity.
Ms Loretta Tomasi. Chief executive, English National Opera. For services to Opera.

Ms Marie de Assis Carreiro. Artistic director, Royal Ballet of Flanders. For services to Dance.
Mr Anthony John William Douglas. Music Teacher, Morley College, London. For services to Further Education.
Miss Joyce Ellis. Founder and Musical director, Kinder Children’s Choirs of the High Peak. For services to Music and Young People in Derbyshire.
Mrs Angela Margaret Kay. Artistic director, Music for Everyone. For services to Music in Nottinghamshire.
Dr Marios Papadopoulos. Founder and Music director, Oxford Philomusica. For services to Music.
Ms Carol Pemberton. Music director and Singer, Black Voices. For services to Music.
John George Ruddick. Musical director, Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra. For services to Jazz.
Mrs Doreen Tabor. Trustee, the Tabor Foundation. For services to charity, cultural understanding and the Arts.

Mrs Valetta Mary Cranmer. For services to the community and to charity through the Sandbach Ladies Choir in East Cheshire.
Mrs June Davenhill. Musical director, Pelsall Ladies Choir. For services to Music and the community.
Colin Brian Edgar. Musical director, Suffolk Constabulary Male Choir. For services to Policing and the community.
Mrs Judith Elizabeth Land. Musical director, Alcester Male Voice Choir. For services to Music and to the community in Alcester, Warwickshire.
Gordon Speers. Musical director, Portadown Male Voice Choir. For services to Music in Northern Ireland.
Donald Keith Coleman. For services to Music and the community in Rivenhall and Silver End.

We have endeavoured to include all musicians in the list. If you know of one we have missed, please email

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