Artists pay tribute to Annie Lennox as she is honoured with the MITS award

Annie Lennox, iconic singer, songwriter and philanthropist, was this evening (Monday 4 November) honoured with the 22nd Music Industry Trusts Award (MITS).

The Award, presented by Peter Gabriel, himself a MITS recipient, was in recognition of Annie Lennox’s outstanding contribution to British music and her indefatigable charity work.  Adele, Joni Mitchell, Sting, Elton John, Stephen Fry, Chrissie Hynde, Emeli Sandé and Archbishop Desmond Tutu all paid tribute to Annie Lennox, citing her as an inspiration and an influence on successive generations of musicians.

Over 1200 guests attended this charity event which is in aid of Nordoff Robbins and The BRIT Performing Arts & Technology School.  The Music Industry Trusts Award is sponsored by Spotify, PPL and Ingenious Media.

Annie Lennox, who attended the event with her family, said:
“I’m very touched and honoured to receive this Award. Music has given me a lifetime of experiences and opportunities that I would never have dreamed possible, and I feel very privileged to have been able to become an artist and communicator, especially as a woman.”

Guests were treated to live performances from Oliver Marques and a thrilling six song finale by Lennox herself, singing ‘1000 Beautiful Things’,
‘There must be an Angel’, ‘Little Bird’, ‘No more I Love You’s’, ‘Here Comes The Rain’ and ‘Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves’.

The many tributes to Annie Lennox told their own story, a person that has clearly touched and inspired countless people, both with her music and her charity work. Here are some extracts from the tributes paid to Annie Lennox:

Adele: “Annie Lennox has been a constant part of my life.  An example of a brilliant talent that exudes excellence and influence on everyone. So many of her songs have been the soundtrack to my life.”

Archbishop Desmond Tutu: “She is one of those exemplary human beings who chose to put her success in her chosen career to work in order to benefit others .   She is a true friend of Africa and of South Africa.  Her AIDs activism in general, and support for the treatment action campaign in-particular, contributed significantly to turning the pandemic around in our country.”

Sir Elton John “Congratulations on receiving the 22nd MITS Award, it is so well deserved and not only for your extraordinary contribution to music and songwriting but also for your outstanding and tireless work as an HIV and AIDS activist and supporter of woman’s rights.”

Stephen Fry: “She shines, that’s what she does, she has her lustre and gleam. As a humanitarian, Annie stands alone.”

Ruby Wax: “She is the Joan of Arc of the 21st Century and one of the only people who puts her money where her mouth is.”

Chrissie Hynde: “ The world is a better place when you sing.”

The Music Industry Trusts Award, now in its 22nd year, has raised over £4.5 million for Nordoff Robbins and the BRIT Trust. It has earned its respected place in the entertainment industry due to the great names that have held this honour: Sir George Martin, Ahmet Ertegun, Sir Elton John and Bernie Taupin, Lucian Grainge CBE, John Barry OBE, Sir Michael Parkinson CBE, Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber, Sir Tom Jones, Kylie Minogue OBE, Sir Harvey Goldsmith, Jools Holland OBE and Gary Barlow OBE. The Award was founded to recognise outstanding achievement in the UK music industry as well as to benefit the charitable work of Nordoff Robbins and the BRIT Trust.

The Award is unique because it recognises the contribution that an individual has made to the industry across a range of activities: record producer, film music composer, broadcaster, artist, music executive, songwriter and concert impresario. The Award evening has become renowned for its magic moments, with unique live performances and this year was extra special, as Annie Lennox transfixed the room with her powerful performance.

Patrick McKenna, Chief Executive, Ingenious said: “Ingenious is delighted to support the Music Industry Awards once again and is thrilled that Annie Lennox OBE is this year’s recipient.  Not only is Annie an iconic British singer and songwriter with a career spanning over 30 years, she is also renowned for her tireless work as a campaigner and philanthropist, notably raising money and awareness for HIV charities in Africa.  Ingenious is proud to be involved with the work of the MITS and its continued support of the BRIT Trust and Nordoff Robbins.”

Peter Leathem, CEO, PPL, said: “Each year the MITS unite the entire UK music industry to honour an individual whose creativity and work are an inspiration not just to all of us in the business but also to millions around the world. Annie Lennox OBE is such a person. Our congratulations go to her not just on what she has achieved musically but also for all the extraordinary humanitarian work she has undertaken and continues to carry out with a sense of love, diligence and duty.”

Angela Watts, VP Global Communications, Spotify said 'Annie is a true national treasure and has worked tirelessly over the years not only to give the world the gift of her incredible music, but also support to many charities close to our own hearts, including Nordoff Robbins. Congratulations Annie, from us all at Spotify.'

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