MacMillan becomes the 26th Fellow of The Ivors Academy, joining a roll-call of extraordinary composers and songwriters, including John Rutter CBE, John Adams, Sir Elton John, Sir Paul McCartney, Dame Judith Weir CBE and Sting 

The Ivors Academy today [March 14]announced Sir James MacMillan as the recipient of Academy Fellowship, which is the highest honour bestowed by the Academy. The Fellowship will be awarded at the Barbican tomorrow evening [15 March], where Sir James will be conducting the UK premiere of his work Fiat Lux with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Chorus, soprano Mary Bevan and baritone Roderick Williams. 

Sir James MacMillan receives Academy Fellowship in recognition of his compositional excellence, immense impact and enduring legacy in the world of music creation. With over 200 works in his acclaimed catalogue, he is known as one of the most successful living composers. He founded his own music festival, The Cumnock Tryst, in his childhood town in Scotland in 2014. Awarded a CBE in 2004, he was knighted in 2015 for services to music.  

Sir James has previously been recognised with multiple awards from The Ivors Academy, including an Ivor Novello Award in 2007 for his outstanding contribution to classical music and two British Composer Awards (now known as The Ivors Classical Awards) in 2008 and 2013 respectively.  

Tom Gray, Chair of The Ivors Academy, said: “It is a great privilege to welcome Sir James MacMillan as the latest Fellow of The Ivors Academy. A prolific and globally-renowned composer, Sir James is a foremost proponent of the power of music to communicate and forge bonds. He is a titan of music, generous in his creativity and craft, and extremely worthy of this recognition from his peers.” 

Sir James MacMillan stated: “It is a great delight and honour to be welcomed as a new Fellow of the Ivors Academy. It is humbling to read the list of Fellows and I will take this opportunity to rededicate my energies to the power of music and its mysterious ability to transform lives.” 

The Ivors Academy Fellowships recognise excellence and impact in the art and craft of music creation which has been awarded to 25 musicians and composers since 2000.  The current list of Fellows includes John Adams, Joan Armatrading CBE, David Arnold, Sir Malcolm Arnold CBE, John Barry OBE, Don Black OBE, Pierre Boulez CBE, Kate Bush CBE, Sir John Dankworth CBE, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies CH CBE, George Fenton, David Ferguson, Peter Gabriel, Sir Barry Gibb CBE, Maurice Gibb CBE, Robin Gibb CBE, Sir Elton John, Julian Joseph OBE, Annie Lennox OBE, Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Tim Rice, John Rutter CBE, Judith Weir CBE and Sting. More information about the Fellows can be found here.  

In 2024 The Ivors Academy will recognise the achievements of songwriters and composers by presenting Ivor Novello Awards at two ceremonies. The Ivors, at the Grosvenor House on 23rd May, celebrates the craft of songwriting and screen composing. The Ivors Classical Awards at BFI Southbank on 12th November, recognises outstanding contemporary composing for classical music and sound art. Entries for The Ivors Classical Awards open in June.