Last week, 16 new Companions were invested into the Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec (OALQ). Among the arts philanthropists and arts workers on the awards stage, classical music was well-represented in Kent Nagano and Charles Richard-Hamelin.
Nagano is the music director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and is particularly noted for his analytical performance approach. In their award speech for Nagano, the Quebec Council of Arts and Letters (CALQ) highlighted the conductor’s initiatives to integrate classical music into the province’s cultural fabric. “By crafting daring combinations of activities — ice hockey, storytelling, and popular song mixed with symphonic music — [Nagano] has paid homage to our roots, our legends, and our heroes.”
Pianist Charles Richard-Hamelin is best known as the silver medalist of the 2015 International Chopin Piano Competition. Now 27 years old, Richard-Hamelin reflected on his OALQ nomination in a statement to Musical Toronto: “It’s a great honor to have been named along with such great artists and at such a young age.”
Other OALQ inductees for 2017 are: Pierre Lassonde, Vincent Warren, Michel Dallaire, Denise Filiatrault, Anna McGarrigle, Diane Dufresne, Florent Vollant, Kim Yaroshevskaya, Michel Rabagliati, Phoebe Greenberg, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Roger Frappier, René Derouin, and Lorraine Pintal.