Mitsuko Uchida

One of classical music’s highest honours, the RPS Gold Medal, was presented to a “peerless musician” at the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards, the ‘oscars’ of live classical music in the UK


Tuesday 8 May 2012, Dorchester Hotel

Pianist Dame Mitsuko Uchida DBE, has been awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal, one of classical music’s highest honours. Hailed by the Society as a “peerless musician”, she joins an illustrious list of current RPS Gold Medallists: Bernard Haitink; Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau; Janet Baker; Alfred Brendel; Colin Davis; Elliott Carter; Pierre Boulez; Simon Rattle; Placido Domingo; Daniel Barenboim; Henri Dutilleux; Thomas Quasthoff and Nikolaus Harnoncourt. 

The Gold Medal was presented to Mitsuko Uchida by RPS Chairman John Gilhooly at this year’s Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards at London’s Dorchester Hotel, in front of an audience of musicians and leading music figures.

The Society’s citation for the Award reads:

Mitsuko Uchida has been enthralling audiences for decades with the sensitivity, insight, and unshowy brilliance of her playing. She is beloved by audiences the world over and held in special affection in Britain, where she now lives.

But she is not an artist who craves the limelight, devoting much of her time to rehearsal and study.  Her luminous and penetratingly intelligent playing of the classical composers, especially the Viennese trio of Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert, has justly gained her worldwide respect and acknowledgement as one of the great pianists of our time.  Through the Borletti-Buitoni Trust she is also a tireless mentor to young artists.

We salute Mitsuko Uchida therefore as both a peerless musician and a great humanist.

The Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal is awarded by the members of the Royal Philharmonic Society for the most outstanding musicianship.  It was created to commemorate the centenary of Beethoven’s birth and celebrates the close relationship between the Society and the composer (the RPS commissioned Beethoven’s 9th Symphony and championed his work, and the medal bears an image of the composer).

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