This concert marks the end of an era for Duchy Opera: 14 years of musical leadership from one of the most prodigious talents of his generation.
Paul Drayton has been at the helm of the company in almost every sense, as musical director, composer, libretto translator, chorus master and pianist for innumerable concerts.
During these years he conducted A Masked Ball, The Wreckers, Tosca, Semele, The Vampire, The Merry Widow, Carmen, Die Fledermaus, his own opera The Hanging Oak, La Traviata and The Merry Wives of Windsor, at venues including village halls, schools, community centres, theatres such as the Northcott Exeter, the Wharf Tavistock and the Hall for Cornwall, and of course at the Minack.
He has directed, programmed and played for our concerts and shows in a vast range of venues, from country houses to Heartlands, from Mevagissey Jubilee Hall to the Tresanton Hotel St Mawes, and almost all points in between.
A keen educationalist, he has been at the forefront of Duchy's initiative The School Run, taking opera to Cornish Primary and Secondary schools, and wrote and directed The Mermaid of Zennor incorporating 270 Primary school children plus the company into a touring production.
As if this were not enough, these years have seen his work performed by choirs from Cornwall to Sweden, commissions from The Three Choirs Festival, Dame Gillian Weir, the cathedrals of Washington DC and Kansas Missouri,
and the Kings Singers.
And all of this has been done with great humour, tact, insight and energy…. Paul, it has been a privilege to be associated with you.