Musical Society: they made it happen
The history of Dungannon Musical Society chronicled here last week, this follow-up is mainly extracts from the special programme for their last big show, Night in Venice, in 1969 and it features some of the mainstays of the society.
The 21st, and last, annual production began with a gala performance of Johan Strauss’s opera on Sunday March 16, proceeds in aid of ‘Handicapped Children to Lourdes Fund, with further shows on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, concluding with show six on Sunday.
Profile - Father Eustace
We are using the excuse of a ‘Twenty-First’ show to risk drawing Father Eustace’s ire upon us.
Over the years, our Musical Director and Producer has built for himself a reputation of giving praise sparsely, and being embarrassed when it is offered to himself. The former is untrue, the latter true.
Since he undertook this most demanding job within our community almost a quarter of a century ago, Father Eustace has untied all tangles for the society, ranging from costuming the Desert Song, partially our of the black-out material, to working out most intricate lighting schemes for the superbly-fitted stage at St.Malachys.
When a show is being staged, he supervises the music of the chorus, principals and orchestra, designs decor and frequently helps to paint it, chooses costumes and makes the unwieldy chaos become cosmos by dint of energy and personality.
Last Spring over seven hundred past members were contacted for a reunion, which would be an indication of just how many people have enjoyed participation in the Musical Society, and how important it has been, and is, in the life of the parish and the dictrict.
Thank you, Father, for the very happy memories!
Appreciation - Rt.Rev.Monsignor
John Dean Quinn, PP VG
I am delighted to have the opportunity to express congratulations to the Musical Society on the 21st Anniversary of its foundation.
This brochure will convey some idea of the range and quality of the work that has been accomplished over the years. Those who have attended the annual performances as participants or spectators will have many happy memories awaked as they turn over these pages.
The society has consistently aimed at, and maintained, very high standards. It would be hard to overestimate the contribution it has made to the cultural life of the community. It has succeeded in making the music of the masters, Schubert amd Strauss, Palestrina and Vittoria, familiar to all our ears.
Nor should we undervalue the social influence of an institution that year after year keeps so many of our people, young and old, busily and happily engaged in the making of music.
The admirable co-operation of the society in the liturgical life of the parish, particularly during Holy Week, must not go unacknowledged by the Parish Priest, nor indeed the fact that all profits made by the society are handed over to the parochial funds. We are under a deep debt of gratitude to Dungannon Musical Society, and to its founder, guide, philosopher and friend, Father Austin Eustace.
Long may it flourish - John Quinn
Profile - Paddy McRory
Our only Honorary Vice-president has been associated with drama in the town since the legendary days of the Pioneer Players, and must have been a God-send to Father Austin Eustace when the curate arrived in town.
Mary, Eileen and Paddy have formed the nucleus of the Musical Society since its foundation, whether on stage or in the orchestra pit.
Paddy’s talent for production, singing and acting, not to mention interjecting and ad-libbing, is acknowledged and acclaimed far beyond the walls of Edendork.
Mary has done her share of purgatory, playing piano for practices.
There was a distinct feeling of void when Paddy officially had to leave our ranks three years ago. Unofficially, he is still here; occasionally he attends practices. Uusually he is consulted by nervous wrecks just after dress rehearsals.
The knowledge that Paddy is in the audience makes everybody that bit happier and, somehow, that bit better.
The Musical Society takes this opportunity of thanking everybody who assisted in production of Night In Venice, especially our audiences and those firms who donated advertising space in the local and provincial papers.
To all the patrons who have given us magnificent support and encouragement over the years, we accord our sincere gratitude.
The society also wishes to record its heartfelt thanks to the press which has afforded it such magnificent coverage at all times.
We also wish to accord our appreciation to Messrs Observer Newspapers who have so efficiently carried out the duties of booking agents in this instance and a special word of thanks to Mrs.G.Devlin and Mr Aloysius McCourt, who have co-operated in this respect.
At this time, we also remember with deepest appreciation the great service rendered to the society by Mr. Ben Donoghue for so many shows and extend our best wishes for a speedy recovery.
To the Scouts our best thanks is due for co-operation in the sale of programmes, now and in the past.
All our patrons who travel from a distance are especially welcome and are invited to have a cup of tea after the performance at a nominal charge. Our best thanks also to the ladies who supplied a welcome ‘cuppa’ during rehearsals.
Finally, to all - front-stage, back-stage or on stage, who have contributed so much to the success story of Dungannon Musical Society, culminating in this their ‘coming of age’ performance, we say simply - Thanks!
And I extend my grateful thanks to Mick Cullen, Philip Dynes, Jim McQuaid, Una Wallace and several other folk for their help with this feature!
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Weather for Dungannon
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 6 mph
Wind direction: South east
Temperature: 8 C to 15 C
Wind Speed: 15 mph
Wind direction: North