Royal composer elected to RSE

Paul Mealor

PROFESSOR Paul Mealor, Professor of Composition at the University of Aberdeen, has been elected to the Royal Society of Edinburgh’s (RSE) Fellowship.

Nominated for their individual excellence in a wide range of fields such as physics, chemistry, informatics, literature, law, social sciences and business, Paul joins the 1,800 current Fellows of the RSE, Scotland’s National Academy.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

Why? Free to subscribe, no paywall, daily business news digest.

Commenting on the news, Professor Mealor said: “This is an enormous honour and one that means a great deal to me. To be recognised for my work as a composer by Scotland’s national academy is very special indeed.”

Professor Mealor, who has taught at the University since 2003, has written music for a host of important royal engagements including the Coronation of His Majesty the King and the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton (now the Prince and Princess of Wales).

The St Asaph-born composer has the distinction of having written the first ever Welsh language performance at a Coronation where his ‘Kyrie’ was sung by the bass-baritone Sir Bryn Terfel, accompanied by the world-famous Choir of Westminster Abbey.

It was the culmination of more than a decade of royal music which began when his setting of Alfred Lord Tennyson’s poem ‘Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal’, rearranged as ‘Ubi Caritas et Amor’, was commissioned by Prince William and Catherine Middleton for their 2011 marriage ceremony.

Professor Mealor has also composed music for a number of charity endeavours, including the song ‘Wherever You Are’ which was performed by the Military Wives choir conducted by Gareth Malone and became the UK’s 2011 Christmas number one single; and music to support the Ballater flood relief efforts championed by His Majesty.

In 2020 Universal Music announced that he had made his way into the top ten “most performed living and recorded composers alive”.

In the New Year’s Honours, he become a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO) – a personal gift given by the King to people who have served him or the monarchy in a personal way.

Other Fellows joining the list at the same time as Professor Mealor include BAFTA and Emmy-winning satirist Armando Iannucci and award-winning journalist and charity founder Sally Magnusson.

President of the RSE, Professor Sir John Ball PRSE, said: “It is an immense honour to extend a warm welcome to each of our distinguished new Fellows.

“Individually, they embody exceptional dedication and accomplishment spanning multiple sectors and disciplines. Collectively, they demonstrate a profound commitment and determination to make meaningful contributions through their endeavours.

“From groundbreaking research that redefines our understanding to the creative pursuits that inspire and enrich our cultural landscape, the RSE proudly embraces the brightest minds, leveraging their unique expertise and perspectives for the betterment of society.

“As Scotland’s National Academy, we remain committed to mobilising a diverse array of expertise to confront society’s most pressing challenges, and I am certain that our new Fellows will prove invaluable assets to the RSE.”

The latest stories