Inspiration Award

supported by Decca Classics

We are pleased to open public voting for the new RPS Inspiration Award, presented for remarkable achievements by non-professional musical groups nationwide.

We invite you to read about the shortlisted entities and vote for your favourite here on our website.

For years, the Royal Philharmonic Society Awards have celebrated the finest classical music-making across the UK. Last year, we introduced the Inspiration Award for those who brightly inspired the nation in the first months of lockdown. It commended professional and non-professional musicians alike.

This year – and from now on – we will present this award outright to a non-professional ensemble or to an individual who works with such groups, in recognition of the remarkable constellation of such music-makers, often overlooked in awards such as these.

Unlike the other RPS Awards whose winners are chosen by expert independent panels, for the very first time the winner of this RPS Award will fittingly be chosen by the public. A shortlist of six exceptional entities has been assembled by a panel who themselves work tirelessly year-round with non-professional groups and, from these, the public is invited to vote for whom they feel should receive this year’s award.

The six shortlisted nominees are as follows. Click each for a flavour of what makes them particularly special and what they have achieved in the last year:

Once you have had chance to consider the six nominees, we invite you to cast a vote for your favourite, using our online voting form specially for the RPS Inspiration Award. Please note individuals may only cast one vote each.

The closing date for votes is 11am on Thursday 30 September.

The winner will be announced at the RPS Awards Presentation at Wigmore Hall at 7.30pm on Monday 1 November.

RPS Chief Executive James Murphy says ‘We are delighted to be taking this step to celebrate the astounding, vibrant range of non-professional music-making in the UK. The six shortlistees are representative of literally thousands of groups nationally who have inventively, resourcefully, resiliently found ways to keep making music together through the pandemic, not only keeping their own spirits bright but cheering their localities too. They are a powerful, timely reminder of what makes our nation so musical, and the sheer creativity occurring on our doorsteps.’

The RPS is particularly thankful to Making Music – the UK’s principal organisation supporting leisure-time music-making – for their help and insights in planning this award.