Transforming Communities

Gillian Green : a life in music, recognised in Queen’s Birthday Honours

Gillian Green with Yehudi Menuhin on the occasion of his 80th birthday

We are delighted that Gillian Green has been awarded an MBE in recognition of her 25 years leading Live Music Now in Wales.

"In 1990, Yehudi Menuhin and I sought to set up a branch of Live Music Now in Wales, and were lucky enough to find talented harpist Gillian Green to help build it with Trustee Lady Crickhowell. Gillian’s flair and dedication have gone far beyond what was asked of her, and in 25 years she has worked continuously and tirelessly. During this time, she has been responsible for thousands of musical performances at care homes, community centres and special needs schools, bringing joy to countless older people and disabled children. From such modest beginnings, LMN is now one of very few arts organisations that work in every single county in Wales. This is all thanks to Gillian’s passionate endeavours, and I am delighted that she has been recognised in this way.” –Ian Stoutzker CBE

Gillian is responsible for Live Music Now’s auditions throughout the UK, taking charge of the gifted young musicians that come to us for support and training. She has always taken this role very seriously, ensuring that we maintain high standards; whilst also being generous, caring and nurturing of young musicians at a very sensitive time in their careers. Although she retired from her directorship role in September 2014, she is continuing with this auditions role for the foreseeable future. 

We have received a wealth of tributes to Gillian from musicians, beneficiaries and admirers throughout the music sector, a selection of which are below.

“As one of the organisation's Welsh patrons, I have witnessed Gillian's work for Live Music Now Wales at first hand. For some 25 years she has contributed tirelessly to this initiative. Through thousands of performances at community venues, where audiences who in the normal run of things are unable to attend concerts she has brought joy to people at the margins of society, the sick, the elderly and children with special needs. Those performances, moreover, have been carefully selected and of the highest quality and have often included new and specially commissioned work. This remarkable mix is worthy of recognition in itself, but through her involvement with many aspects of our musical life Gillian is respected and loved.”John Metcalf MBE (composer)

“I am absolutely delighted that Gillian has received the MBE for her services to music. We set up the Welsh Branch of LMN in 1990 with a blank sheet of paper, no money and a lot of laughter. As she was Welsh speaking, it meant that we could reach a far wider audience. Gillian, through LMN and many other musical organisations, has transformed musical life in Wales. The principality owes her a huge debt of gratitude.” Lady Crickhowell, Vice-President Live Music Now

“I am very privileged to have known and worked with Gillian Green since 1990 when she became the Director of Live Music Now Wales. Since then, she has worked tirelessly to promote the very ethos of Live Music Now ensuring that live music of an exceptionally high standard is brought to a very diverse range of people throughout Wales. Gillian has been responsible for organising performances by LMN musicians at thousands of concerts in care homes, day centres, prisons, schools, special needs schools, community centres, concert halls, theatres & music festivals. She has inspired, guided, supported and nurtured so many LMN musicians by being generous with her time, knowledge and experience. Her passion, dedication and commitment to live music has been, without doubt, far beyond the call of duty.”Philip Lloyd Evans (baritone)

“I have seen at first hand how Gillian has not only maintained her reputation as a respected performer and inspiring teacher, but had a transformative effect on the Welsh music scene through her work for Live Music Now and various musical festivals and organisations.  Her work in establishing LMN as a thriving charity in Wales has meant that thousands of people have been able to enjoy life-enhancing musical experiences otherwise inaccessible, and hundred of young performers have been given a lifeline to help them through a notoriously tricky early stage in their careers.  However, Gillian’s work goes beyond this and her involvement in initiatives such as the Glamorgan Harp Guild and the Welsh Harp College have kept old traditions vibrant, while, through organisations such as the Criccieth Festival and Ty Cerdd, she has made a great contribution to the health of contemporary music making in Wales. A generous spirit and warm, modest character has meant that you never appeal in vain to Gillian for help.   When I worked for The Prince of Wales, Gillian was always on hand to give advice when we revived the post of Royal Harpist, and her mentoring of successive harpists subsequently made a great difference to the success of the scheme.”Manon Antoniazzi

“Gillian was invaluable in guiding my career. She could always see my individuality as a musician, and listened as a friend as well as a mentor in helping to fulfill goals and dreams.  Since then I have been able to see her continued work with young musicians and see the effect which her help has on their careers. She always strives for the best for them, giving far more than required and asking for nothing in return.”Amanda Whiting (harpist)

“Gillian brought music to a wide spectrum of audiences, with great success and has worked tirelessly to support music for all. I am delighted that she has been recognised for her many remarkable achievements in promoting music in Wales: her passionate and tireless endeavours that have touched so many lives and particularly for her unstinting support of young musicians in Wales.”Christiana Mavron  (violinist)