Michael Bell awarded MBE
9 January 2018
Michael Bell, founder and conductor of the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra, has been awarded an MBE in the 2018 New Year’s Honours.
Michael, who graduated from the Cardiff University School of Music in 1981, has been given the honour for services to the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra.
Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra, formed by Michael in 1982, has given over 300 concerts. The orchestra is Wales’ premier non-professional orchestra and has previously performed with guests including Sir Bryn Terfel and Sir Karl Jenkins, an alumnus of the School of Music, as well as Michael Sheen and Bonnie Tyler.
Michael has conducted major works with the orchestra including symphonies by Mahler; Stravinsky’s ballets The Rite of Spring and Petrushka; Richard Strauss’s An Alpine Symphony; Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony and much more besides.
Of receiving the honour, Michael said “It was a huge surprise and a great honour to receive an MBE. I formed the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra in 1982 for what I thought would be a one off concert, but we are still performing together 35 years later. In December 2017 our concert at St David’s Hall broke a box office record for the venue, which was amazing for us.
"I am very grateful to the School of Music for the happy time I spent there, and the experience I gained in conducting the orchestra and wind band. And also for the continued association the orchestra and I had with the School for several years after my graduation."
Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra regularly perform at St David’s Hall.