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More than 60 arts professionals are included in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours list, the most ethnically diverse to date. 

Photo of Hilary Carty
Clore Leadership Executive Director Hilary Carty

Leaders in dance have featured prominently in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, as figures across arts, music, drama and literature are also celebrated.

Arlene Philips has been made a Dame for her services to dance and charity, alongside sculptor Phyllida Barlow, pianist Imogen Cooper and The Great British Bake-Off judge Prue Leith, recognised for her services to broadcasting. Actor Jonathan Pryce received a Knighthood for services to drama.

Dance is one of the most represented sectors in the arts on this year’s honours list with six awards. Theresa Ann Beattie and Emma Gladstone were given an OBE, Pippa Moore an MBE and Stephanie Phillip a BEM, all for services to dance.


DanceEast Chief Executive Brendan Keaney won an OBE. He said he was “shocked and delighted” to see dance recognised heavily across the list.

“Since 2020 we have been developing some digital tools that we firmly believe will be gamechangers for dance teaching in schools,” Keaney added.

“Hopefully, this award will help these innovations gain some of the attention that they truly deserve.”

In music, Julian Lloyd Webber has become an OBE for his term as Principle of Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, alongside composer Eleanor Alberga. Musicians Lulu and Rick Wakeman of Yes received CBEs.

Artist Edmund de Waal, Brixton House chair David Bryan and author of ‘The Other Boleyn Girl’ Philippa Gregory were also among those awarded CBEs.

Services through Covid-19

Like last year’s list, those who worked to combat Covid-19 feature heavily, making up 23% of award winners.

Folk Arts Oxford Director Catherine Elizabeth McGill was awarded a BEM for transforming Folk Weekend Oxford into a four-week online event after the first lockdown was announced.

Director Matthew Howard Baker received a BEM for services to music and community during Covid-19 and DCMS Director Emma Squire became a CBE for services to heritage and arts during Covid-19.

Clore Leadership Executive Director Hilary Carty was given an OBE for services to leadership development in the cultural and creative industries. 

Clore Leadership engaged with more than 2,600 people online during the past year, with the aspiration to “achieve a rich, diverse and representative cultural sector.”

“The cultural and creative industries channel the hearts and minds of society and create spaces for great creativity and resourcefulness - qualities that have been in high demand over the past year,” Carty commented. 

“It is always rewarding to be nurturing and engaging with new generations of leaders, and I am humbled to receive this recognition for doing the work I love.”

Increased diversity

This year’s list is being championed as the most ethnically diverse to date, with 15% of recipients coming from an ethnic minority background.

Women represent 50% of the total of the 1,129 people receiving an award, although 61% of recipients at CBE level and above are men.

The percentage of award winners who are disabled or have a long-term health condition increased by 3% from last October’s list, to 9%.

Award winners were asked to report their socioeconomic background for the first time this year. 17.3% of recipients said they were from a lower socioeconomic background.

Full list

See below for a full list of award winners cited for their service in the arts. The full list of 2021 honours can be found here.

Dames and Knighthoods

Phyllida Barlow 
Imogen Cooper 
Prudence Margaret Leith 
Arlene Phillips 
Jonathan Pryce


David Bryan 
Edmund De Waal 
Williams Stephen Ferris 
Philippa Gregory 
John Wesley Holder 
Lulu Kennedy-Cairns 
Martin Paar 
Emma Squire 
Richard Christopher Wakeman 


Eleanor Alberga 
David John Almond 
Theresa Ann Beattie    
William Burdett-Coutts 
Roma Burnett 
Anna Carragher 
Hilary Carty Bing-Pappoe 
Lolita Chakrabarti 
Sadie Coles 
Deborah Anne Dyer (Skin) 
Emma Gladstone 
Brendan Joseph Keaney
Professor Julian Lloyd Webber
Peter Gerald Stewart Murray 
Alan Parsons
Alexia Jane Quin
Veronica Maudlyn Ryan
Lemn Sissay
John Heath Summers
Michael Volpe


Genevieve Alison-Jane Ballard
Morna Helen Barron
Nadine Rohanda Smith Wray Willow Benjamin
Jay Blades
Dennis Bovell
James Richard Brand
Hilary Burns
Allan James Clayton
Susan Kay Dunbar
Jess Gillam
Paul James Higgins
Englebert Humperdinck
Irenosen Iseghohi Okojie 
Patrice Eunice Lawrence
Claire Malcolm
Kevin Maxwell
Simon Andrew Hicks Mayo
Frances Moore 
Pippa Moore
Alison Moyet
John Wilson Oxley
Christopher John Robinson
Francis Arthur Runacres
Steven Charles Tompkins
Huw Thomas Watkins
Ruth Wilson
Lorraine Wright


Matthew Howard Baker
William Alan Hawkshaw
Andrew Kent Hewish
Martin Frederic Hudson
Gertrude Olive Jamison
Peter Outram Lawson
Catherine Elizabeth McGill
Margaret McNellis
Stephanie Phillip
Kenneth Alan Edward Taylor
Noel Harwood Tredinnick
Jeremy Huw Williams

Please contact editors@artsprofessional.co.uk for any omissions.