Graham Johnson has been awarded the Cross of the Order of Merit by the Federal Republic of Germany in recognition of his “outstanding contribution to the art of German song in Britain.”
Bestowing the honour, the country’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier praised the British pianist’s “tireless commitment to advancing the careers of young talent” and “special contribution to British-German musical friendship”.
The award is the latest of many accolades which the “peerless song accompanist” (The Daily Telegraph) has received over a distinguished career, most notably a Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et Lettres from the French Government, the Wigmore Hall Medal and an OBE in the 1994 Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Celebrated for his performances and recordings as an accompanist – in particular the complete Lieder by Schubert and Schumann for Hyperion – Graham Johnson is also known for his writings on the art form. His latest book, Poulenc: The Life in the Songs, was published in 2020.
The presentation ceremony of the Order of Merit will take place at the Germany Embassy in London when COVID restrictions are lifted.