The Scottish violinist and music education champion is honoured for services to music

Nicola Benedetti - Rhys Frampton

Photo: Rhys Frampton

Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti has been awarded a CBE (Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) for services to music in the 2019 New Year Honours list. The honour is one class below a damehood/knighthood.

Benedetti has worked with organisations such as Sistema Scotland and the Nordoff Robbins music therapy charity, and has been an outspoken supporter of music education. She is also currently president of ESTA UK, the European String Teachers Association’s British chapter.

‘I am very grateful to receive this honour,’ she said.

‘This meaningful public recognition encourages me to deepen my commitment to music, to playing and to providing enrichment, inspiration and variation to the education system that serves communities throughout the UK.

‘I am more resolved than ever to reinforce my advocacy for arts and culture, and to challenge what it means to teach music well. We often hear about the unintended benefits of studying music. We are also told that an education inclusive of the arts develops character.

‘But, let’s also consider the simple and profound beauty of just seeing and hearing people playing and singing together, and offering something personal to an audience full of strangers. I have, so many times, witnessed the fulfilment, heightened emotion and sense of community this collective action produces.

‘It shakes us out of the routine and connects us with a higher purpose. It is a truly beautiful, wondrous thing, worthy of our attention and our investment. I only hope to prove my worthiness through my continued dedication.’

Benedetti was previously made MBE in 2013 and awarded the Queen’s Medal for Music in 2016.