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Peter Maxwell Davies appointed a Companion of Honour

(January 2014)

Composer Sir Peter Maxwell Davies has been appointed a Companion of Honour in the 2014 New Year Honours.

In recognition of his services to music, Sir Peter  Maxwell Davies has been appointed a Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour in the New Year 2014 Honours List. Maxwell Davies was made a CBE in 1981 and knighted in 1987. He was appointed Master of the Queen's Music in March 2004 for a ten-year period which ends this year.

The Order of the Companions of Honour is bestowed on public figures who have made a pre-eminent and sustained contribution in the arts, science, medicine or government. There are currently 40 other Companions, among them singer Dame Janet Baker, composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle, artists David Hockney and Bridget Riley, director Peter Brook, naturalist Sir David Attenborough, actors Sir Ian McKellen and Dame Judi Dench, and physicists Stephen Hawking and Peter Higgs. The Order was founded by King George V in June 1917 and is currently limited to no more than 65 Companions of Honour from the UK and Commonwealth, in addition to the Sovereign. Four Honorary Companions from outside the UK and Commonwealth include conductor Bernard Haitink.

On his new appointment, Maxwell Davies said:
“I am delighted to be joining such distinguished company in receiving the Order of the Companions of Honour. It is vital that society acknowledges the importance of the arts and related fields, and, for me, this honour is recognition for the art of composition and classical music in general. Anything that raises the profile of our art form is both wonderful and most welcome.”

Peter Maxwell Davies's 80th birthday is celebrated on 8 September 2014. 80th events are launched on 2 February with the premiere of his new Symphony No.10 (published by Schott) by the London Symphony Orchestra and Antonio Pappano. Classic works by the composer, including Eight Songs for a Mad King and An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise, are programmed around the world in honour of the 80th birthday, from Athens and Florence to Calgary, in concert halls, opera theatres, conservatoires and even on a barge on a Parisian canal. Record releases during the birthday year include reissues by Naxos of Strathclyde Concerto No.10, Stone Litany and The Beltane Fire, and by Treasure Island Music of the composer's classic recording of Eight Songs for a Mad King with the Fires of London.
> Maxwell Davies 80th birthday

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Photo: Martin Lengemann

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