Just in: Rare honour for Simon Rattle

Just in: Rare honour for Simon Rattle


norman lebrecht

December 30, 2013

The outgoing Berlin Philharmonic conductor has been appointed to the Order of Merit in Britain’s New Year’s Honours List. The OM is restricted to 24 living individuals at any given time. Rattle is the first musician of his generation to be included.


simon rattle1

Other music honorees include a Companion of Honour (CH) to the composer Peter Maxwell Davies, an OBE to the singer Katherine Jenkins and CBEs to the pianist Stephen Hough and the dancer Carlos Acosta.

Jenkins said: ‘To accept such an award after only a decade of service to music and charity, comes as a wonderful surprise. I share this award with the charitable bodies I am so privileged to work with, especially to those brave service men and women who risk so much for us all on a daily basis.’

More details here.


  • MacroV says:

    Well, you can’t argue with Penelope Keith. But I think Mo Farah (OBE) should now be lobbying for a knighthood; surely a man who has won 5 of the last 6 global championships at 5-10,000 meters (and finished second in that sixth race) outranks a modestly talented (if not unattractive) Welsh warbler.

  • It saddens me that once more guitarist Julian Bream, now 80, has been overlooked for a knighthood yet again. Apart from his expansive recording and performing career he has enriched the classical guitar repertoire immeasurably during his active performing career and now in his retirement through the Julian Bream Foundation. This body has is also sponsoring concerts and students at the Royal Colleges of Music with the donation of fine instruments as well as commissioning new works from composers such as Harrison Birtwistle and Leo Brouwer. A sorry ommission.

  • ‘To accept such an award etc etc’. How about ‘To receive such an award…’

    Shurely shome mishtake?

    • Martin says:

      The phrasing by be intentional, as you only get it if you accept it. Like when starting a new job i.e. “I’m happy to accept my new role as head butler of the McGuiver household”..

  • Siegfried says:

    Good for Rattle…well done. Tis a high honour and well deserved.

    The destructive elements in the Berlin Phil…..”‘the wreckers”‘ must be

    foaming at the mouth and tearing their garments.

    Her Majesty is to be congratulated.

    • Michael Schaffer says:

      I don’t know who the “wreckers in the Berlin Phil” are but whoever they are and whatever “wrecking” they do, it is highly unlikely that they give a damn about silly kings and queens throwing around silly titles.

  • The idea that even HM The Queen could “make” Angela Lansbury a dame. 😉 Born to dameness if there ever was one so.

  • William Britton says:

    Sorry for my “sloopy” post — but my heart is in the right place. JULIAN BREAM should have received a knight hood 10-15 years ago. He tirelessly traveled the world introducing the classical guitar and English lute. (Yes, Segovia “invented” the classical guitar, but he did not popularize it.

    BREAM was and is one of only a few giants in music in the 20th Century.