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30 December 2022, 22:30 | Updated: 30 December 2022, 22:40
His Majesty The King’s New Year Honours list has recognised a host of leading and influential figures in music, including Classic FM presenter John Suchet.
Classic FM presenter John Suchet has been awarded an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the New Year Honours list for 2023, for services to journalism and charity.
John has been at Classic FM for well over a decade, hosting the mid-morning programme every weekday from January 2011. In 2020, he began hosting The Classic FM Concert on weekday evenings, before stepping back from presenting a regular show in July 2022, after 12 years of presenting daily live programmes.
Prior to joining Classic FM, John spent more than 30 years at ITN where he covered historic moments including the outbreak of the Gulf War, revolutions in Iran and the Philippines, the funerals of Princess Diana and the Queen Mother, and the wedding of Prince Edward and Sophie Rhys-Jones.
In 2020, John and his wife, Nula, were announced as Ambassadors for Alzheimer’s Society.
John Suchet is joined on the list of recipients, published today on 30 December, by fellow broadcaster YolanDa Brown, who also receives an OBE for services to music, music education, and to broadcasting.
A saxophonist and composer, Brown won the MOBO award for Best Jazz in 2008 and 2009, becoming the first musician ever to have been nominated for the award in two consecutive years, let alone win it.
Alongside an illustrious career in performing and broadcasting, Brown was appointed chair of Youth Music in 2018, and launched the London Saxophone Festival that same year. In 2022, she was appointed both National Council Member at Arts Council England and chair of the British Phonographic Industry (BPI).
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Legendary guitarist Dr Brian May will also receive a Knighthood for services to music and to charity.
Best known as the lead guitarist and co-founder of British rock band Queen, May is also an astrophysicist and animal rights champion, founding animal charity ‘Save Me’ in 2010 to campaign against fox hunting and badger culling.
He was previously appointed a CBE in 2005 by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the music industry and for charity work.
Recipients of a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in 2023 include film composer George Fenton, best known for his score to the 1993 film Groundhog Day and for his work on wildlife television documentaries including The Blue Planet, Frozen Planet, and Planet Earth, for services to music.
Royal Northern College of Music principal Professor Linda Merrick will also receive a CBE for services to music in higher education, alongside chief executive of the Bristol Music Trust, Louise Mitchell, for services to the arts in Bristol.
Scottish bagpipe player Stuart Liddell has been appointed MBE for services to piping and music education, alongside mezzo-soprano Christine Rice, who receives her MBE for services to opera, and musical director Dr Mike Thomas, who receives an MBE for services to the Welsh Male Voice Choirs of the Pelenna Valley and the Cynon Valley. Michael Lloyd, chief executive of Stoke-on-Trent Classics, is also awarded an OBE for services to classical music.
Elsewhere, Lady Sarah Dorfman is awarded OBE for services to ballet and dance, while chief executive and artistic director of Leeds-based South Asian Arts UK, Keranjeet Kaur Virdee is awarded MBE for services to the arts, notably South Asian music and dance.
British Empire Medals (BEM) have been awarded to Joe Broughton, director of The Conservatoire Folk Ensemble, and Norfolk-based luthier Michael Gee, both for services to music, as well as to Richard Fox, musical director of the Metropolitan Police Choir and Police Constable of the Metropolitan Police Service, for services to policing and to music.
Further Medallists of the Order of the British Empire also include organiser and teacher at Pan Nation, Christopher Storey, for services to Steel Pan Music and to the community in Tottenham, Greater London, music teacher and conductor Ann Pinhey, for services to music, to choirs and to charity, and also to Donald Armstrong, for services to music and to the community in Dingwall, Scotland.