RPS Gold Medal

The Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal is the Society’s highest honour and is awarded for the most outstanding musicianship and is presented to the finest musicians of any nationality.

It was initiated in 1870, the Centenary of Beethoven’s birth, to celebrate the close relationship between the Society and the composer. The medal bears the image of Beethoven depicted by Schaller in the iconic RPS bust, and has become one of the most privileged honours in the world of music.

Among the names on the list of honour are Johannes Brahms (1877), Fritz Kreisler (1904), Frederick Delius and Edward Elgar (1925), Richard Strauss (1936), John Barbirolli (1950), Kathleen Ferrier (1953), Igor Stravinsky (1954), Benjamin Britten (1964) Vladimir Horowitz (1974) Witold Lutoslawski (1986) and Leonard Bernstein (1987).

Recent Gold Medal recipients include Martha Argerich, Dame Janet Baker, Daniel Barenboim, Alfred Brendel, Placido Domingo, Sofia Gubaidulina, Bernard Haitink, Mariss Jansons, György Kurtág, Jessye Norman, Sir Antonio Pappano, Thomas Quasthoff, Sir Simon Rattle, András Schiff, Sir John Tomlinson, Dame Mitsuko Uchida, John Williamsand Anne-Sophie Mutter.

The RPS welcomes nominations for the RPS Gold Medal year-round from RPS Members and colleagues across the music profession. Those eligible to nominate can email us with details of your nominee, ideally providing a short citation of up to 300 words outlining why you believe they are deserving of such an accolade.

The RPS Board and Council meets to consider all those nominated then brings a proposal to the Annual General Meeting every Spring – for Members to vote on – for whom should receive the Gold Medal.

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