31 December 2013 at 10.43am | 7 Comments
A number of names from the worlds of opera and ballet have been included in the New Year's Honours list.
Carlos Acosta has been awarded the CBE, capping a remarkable year for the Royal Ballet Guest Principal which has seen him stage a new production of Don Quixote at Covent Garden, release his debut novel, and star in his first feature film.
'I am very excited and thrilled about this news,' said Carlos, 'I never expected to receive an honour such as this, and am both delighted and very proud to be given such recognition for my work in the dance world. It was a huge surprise, and I feel privileged to be included.'
Opera director John Copley has also been awarded the CBE. He is perhaps best known for his much-loved Royal Opera production of La bohème. The production marks its 40th year in 2014.
Conductor Sir Simon Rattle was awarded the Order of Merit. This follows his CBE in 1987 and knighthood in 1994. Sir Simon returns to Covent Garden in 2014 to conduct Robert Carsen's award-winning production of Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmélites.
Choreographer and former dancer Gillian Lynne was made a Dame for services to dance and musical theatre. Following her performances with Sadler's Wells Ballet as a Leading Soloist between 1944 and 1951, Dame Gillian was instrumental in the development of jazz dance in Britain, leading to her iconic work on the musicals Cats and The Phantom of the Opera.
Master of the Queen's Music, composer Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, has been made a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour. His 1980 opera The Lighthouse was performed at Covent Garden in the Linbury Studio Theatre in 2012.
Others honoured include philanthropist Lady Patricia Hobson (OBE for services to ballet and philanthropy), Artistic Director of the Royal Ballet of Flanders Maria Assis Carreiro (MBE for services to dance) and Liv Lorent, founder of balletLorent (MBE for services to dance).