Concert to honour leading light who fostered Sunderland’s musical talent

Members of Sunderland Pianoforte Society
Members of Sunderland Pianoforte Society
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A MAN who encouraged young musical talent to shine will be remembered at a special recital.

The musical tribute to Laurie Giles will take place at the Museum and Winter Gardens on May 21 and will feature young pianists from Sage Gateshead’s weekend school.

Laurie Giles, chairman of Sunderland Pianoforte Society, who died January 2013

Laurie Giles, chairman of Sunderland Pianoforte Society, who died January 2013

It’s set to combine Laurie’s two loves of piano and fostering the talent of future musicians.

Laurie, who died in January aged 82, had been chairman of Sunderland Pianoforte Society for 12 years and was responsible for establishing its Young Pianists Festival in 2003.

Society secretary Lily Scott said: “He had a great passion for encouraging young people’s talent. He set up the first festival in 2003 and it was so successful that it was held again in 2005, 2007 and 2009.

“His tireless efforts will always be remembered by our society and also by the other organisations with which he was involved.”

The society, which this year celebrates its 70th anniversary, decided to host the tribute as a way of thanking Laurie for his contribution. Laurie, who lived in Hartlepool with wife Nora, was well known for presenting Sounds Orchestral on what was then Great North Radio.

He was also conductor of the Teesside University Orchestra and founder of the Hartlepool Youth Brass Band.

•A tribute to Laurie Giles will take place in the Pottery Room in the Museum and Winter Gardens at 7.15pm on Tuesday, May 21. Tickets are £8 on the door, and under-16s go free.