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Composition Professor wins ISM’s highest accolade

Wed 5 May 2021

Errollyn Wallen CBE is the recipient of the 2020 ISM Distinguished Musician Award. 

Formed in 1882, The Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) is the UK’s professional body for musical artists. Since 1976, they have awarded the ISM Distinguished Musician Award which recognises an individual’s outstanding contribution to musical life in the UK. 

This year, critically acclaimed Belize-born British composer Errollyn Wallen CBE has been named the 2020 winner, joining the likes of cellist Jacqueline du Pres, conductor Sir Charles Mackerras and composer Sir Michael Tippett.  

Errollyn, whose work ‘Jerusalem-Our clouded Hills’ was premiered at the 2020 Last Night of the Proms, is central within Trinity Laban’s Composition department. She has received commissions from the BBC, the Royal Opera House and The Schubert Ensemble. She is also frequently seen and heard presenting on BBC television and radio — latterly as a member of the judging panel for the 2021 BBC Young Musicians of the Year. 

ISM President, Professor Chris Collins commented – 

“Both her career and music-making transcend boundaries, and during COVID-19, Errollyn has continued to innovate, explore and challenge. In my term as ISM President, I can think of no one more worthy of receiving this award.” 

Errollyn Wallen CBE said –  

“I am deeply honoured to receive this award from the ISM, who do so much to promote the vital importance of music for us all. These times have revealed that the making of live music has been under the direst threat and yet the need and longing for it has never been greater.” 

Find out more about our Composition Department.