Legendary conductor Sir Colin Davies has passed away following a battle with an unknown illness.
Colin Davis dies. Sir Colin Davis, the conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, has died aged 85 following a battle with an unspecified illness. The news of his death was announced on the LSO's official website and since then the site has become overrun with messages of condolence towards the late Davis. In the statement released by LSO, Davis is described as having an "immense" role in British music during his lifetime, adding "music lovers across the world have been inspired by his performances and recordings."
Sir Colin was born in Weybridge on 25 September 1927 and began his love affair with music when he began studying the clarinet at the Royal College of Music before the outbreak of the Second World War, during which he played in the band of the Household Cavalry during his military service. Following the war, he began his conducting career with the BBC, becoming the corporation's assistant conductor of the Scottish Symphony Orchestra in 1957. He moved to Sadlers Wells two years later to become as principal conductor and later a musical director before returning to the BBC to serve as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra in 1967 and music director of the Royal Opera House in 1971. Sir Colin's love affair with classical music stretched beyond the UK too, with the maestro conducting the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra between 1983 and 1992 and serving as principal guest conductor with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and New York Philharmonic.
For years Davis has been decorated with various awards for his musical achievements and was Knighted in 1980, before being recognised two more times by the Queen, becoming a Companion of Honour in the Queen's Birthday Honours in 2001 and receiving The Queen's Medal for Music in December 2009. Sir Colin was also awarded international honours by Denmark, Italy, France, Germany and Finland.
Sir Colin passed away on Sunday evening (April 14) after succumbing to illness and our thoughts remain with his family and friends. The messages of condolence on LSO's website are continually flowing in and can be added to by members of the public.