All the right notes for Prince Charles at Royal College of Music

The Prince of Wales awarded honours at the Royal College of Music (RCM) in London yesterday, during his annual visit.

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Donning his robes as President of the college, The Prince of Wales presented awards to various figures from across the music industry.

Among those honoured was Sir Antonio Pappano, Conductor and Music Director of the Royal Opera House. Pappano has nurtured many former students as they progress from the RCM Opera Studio on to the professional stage, with numerous students having been accepted onto the Royal Opera House’s Jette Parker Young Artists Programme in recent years.

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Founded in 1882, RCM is one of the world’s leading conservatoires, providing specialised musical education and professional training at the highest international level for performers, conductors and composers.

While Her Majesty The Queen is the College’s official Patron, Prince Charles has served in his role as President since 1993. The Queen Mother was president before this, for some four decades, and she was also given an honorary doctorate from the college.

Prince Charles presented awards at the Royal College of Music (RCM via Twitter)

Jonas Kaufmann also received an award today. Described by the New York Times as ‘the most important, versatile tenor of his generation’, Kaufmann rose to fame through his spinto roles, most notably at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. He has won four Gramophone Awards for his operatic albums, of which Pappano conducted “Verismo Arias’, winning the Recital Award in 2011.

Rachel Portman, OBE, was made a fellow of the College. Ms. Portman was the first female composer to win an Academy Award in the category of Best Musical or Comedy Score (for “Emma” in 1996). She was also the first woman to receive the Richard Kirk Award at the BMI Film & TV Awards for her contributions to film and television music.

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Speaking to Classic FM after the ceremony, Ms Portman said, “It’s such an honour to be made an honorary fellow by such an institution as this.” Her full interview is available here

The Prince of Wales is well-known for his love of and expertise in all things classical music. He is said to have assisted the Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex with selecting music for their wedding ceremonies.

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This article was updated in March 2020 to reflect the error; the performance in the studio with hardhats was in 2019. 

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