SMU Meadows Honors Musician and Composer Stewart Copeland with Meadows Award

As the 2024 Meadows Award recipient, Copeland will perform with Meadows Symphony Orchestra for the 31st annual benefit concert Meadows at the Meyerson.

The Police's Stewart Copeland is the 2024 Meadows Award recipient.
Stewart Copeland, founder of the British rock group The Police, will perform with the Meadows Symphony Orchestra in April. Photo by Kai B. Joachim

The Meadows School of the Arts at SMU today announced that the recipient of the Meadows Award is Stewart Copeland, who achieved global recognition as the drummer of the English rock band The Police and is an acclaimed composer whose career spans film, television, video games, ballet, opera, and orchestral music. As the recipient of the Meadows Award, first given in 1983, Copeland will complete an artistic residency in Dallas this spring and lead the Meadows Symphony Orchestra in a performance of his full orchestral rearrangement of The Police’s best-known songs, “Police Deranged for Orchestra”—the first time the work will be performed by a collegiate orchestra—at the 31st annual “Meadows at the Meyerson” benefit concert on April 16.


The Meadows Award is given to an artist of national or international renown who has soared to the utmost height of their profession. It honors the accomplishments of an artist at the pinnacle of a distinguished career. The Award includes an on-campus residency working with Meadows students and is presented to an artist in a discipline represented by one of the academic units within the Meadows School: advertising, art, art history, arts management and arts entrepreneurship, corporate communication and public affairs, creative computation, dance, film and media arts, journalism, music, and theater. In addition to performing with the Meadows Symphony Orchestra, Copeland will bring his artistic collaborators to Dallas and speak with students about his career.


“The Meadows School is recognizing Stewart Copeland with the Meadows Award not only because of his prodigious gifts as a musician and composer, but also because of the unfailing dedication to artistic innovation and experimentation that has fueled his multidisciplinary career for nearly five decades,” stated Samuel S. Holland, Algur H. Meadows Dean at The Meadows School of the Arts. “We are grateful to Stewart for working with Meadows students, who we know will be inspired by Stewart’s trajectory and carry his example forward with them in their own practices.”


“Musicians and artists of all kinds are compelled by an innate drive. Constant reinvention is how I recommend to channel that drive. I’m honored to receive the Meadows Award and excited to share all I’ve learned through my career as a drummer and composer with Meadows students. I can’t wait to join the Meadows Symphony Orchestra on stage,” stated Stewart Copeland.


In addition to being the founding member of The Police, Copeland’s career as a composer began in 1983, when Francis Ford Coppola commissioned him to create the soundtrack for the film “Rumble Fish,” for which Copeland received a Golden Globe nomination. His extensive film and television credits include the Oliver Stone films “Wall Street” and “Talk Radio” (1988), and the cult series “Dead Like Me” (2003-2004). Copeland scored the hit PlayStation game “Spyro the Dragon” (1998) and several of its sequels. His concert works include the Dallas Symphony Orchestra commission “Gamelan D’Drum” (2011) and an orchestral score for Fred Niblo's silent 1925 film “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ.” In the worlds of ballet and opera, his credits include commissions by the San Francisco Ballet, the Seattle Symphony, and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, among many others.


Copeland received his most recent Grammy awards in 2022 and 2023.


Tickets for Meadows at the Meyerson 2024 featuring Stewart Copeland and Meadows Symphony Orchestra on Tuesday, April 16 at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center (2301 Flora St, Dallas, TX 75201) are available from the Meadows Box Office, or can be purchased here.



About the Meadows Award

The Meadows Award is awarded by the Meadows School with funding from The Meadows Foundation, first conferred in 1983. A vital component of the Meadows Award is an on-campus residency where artists work directly with Meadows School students. Previous winners of the Meadows Award, also formerly known as the Meadows Prize, include choreographer Martha Graham (1982); playwright Arthur Miller (1991); lyricist and composer Stephen Sondheim (1994); trumpeter and composer Wynton Marsalis (1997); actress Angela Lansbury (1999); Grammy-winning contemporary music ensemble eighth blackbird and New York-based public arts organization Creative Time (2010); playwright and performer Will Power and choreographer Shen Wei, artistic director of New York-based Shen Wei Dance Arts (2011); Tony-winning playwright and screenwriter Enda Walsh and choreographer Michael Keegan-Dolan, artistic director of Dublin-based Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre (2012); violist Nadia Sirota and sociopolitical artist Tania Bruguera (2013); choreographer and founder of Urban Bush Women Jawole Willa Jo Zollar (2014); the Detroit-based performance artist collective Complex Movements, and Lear deBessonet and The Public Theater’s Public Works program (2015); southwest curatorial initiative New Cities, Future Ruins (2016); and the arts investment initiative CultureBank (2018).


About SMU Meadows

Formally established at SMU in 1969 and named in honor of benefactor Algur H. Meadows, the Meadows School of the Arts is one of the foremost arts education institutions in the United States. The Meadows School offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in an unusual mix of the arts—visual (art, art history and creative computation), performing (dance, music and theatre) and communications (advertising; film and media arts; corporate communication and public affairs; and journalism)—as well as a preeminent program in arts management and arts entrepreneurship. The goal of the Meadows School, as a comprehensive educational institution, is to prepare students to meet the demands of professional careers. The school is a leader in developing innovative outreach and community engagement programs, challenging its students to make a difference locally and globally by developing connections between art, entrepreneurship and change. Meadows is also a convener for the arts in North Texas, serving as a catalyst for new collaborations and providing critical industry research. Learn more at