Honorary Life Memberships for long-serving Bath Opera members Brian Hunt and Peter Blackwood

The Chairman’s report to the AGM in June 1997 read,

“The committee continued to be concerned as the financial problems continued to get worse …
The committee decided that it would be prudent to recommend to the group that this year’s
production of Mefistofele be cancelled and that they should decide whether they wished the group to disband…”

The production was indeed cancelled (the only such occasion in the company’s history apart from due to COVID), but as we know Bath Opera recovered, helped by two important decisions following that fateful AGM.

  1. Brian Hunt was appointed Treasurer and served for the next 17 years. Although there were a couple of further financial scares, Brian’s steady hand on the tiller was a major factor in the continuing success of Bath Opera for all those years. This year he has decided to retire from the chorus, but he is keen to keep contributing however he can.
  2. Peter Blackwood was invited to conduct the next production ‘Force of Destiny’ in Spring 1998. He conducted every main show for 22 years until he took a well-earned break, and he is still conducting us today. However Peter’s service to Bath Opera goes way beyond his musical skills and year after year, the company’s debt to him is recorded in Chairman’s reports for his energy, drive, and his unconditional willingness to pitch in whenever something needed doing.

In recognition of the amazing service of Brian and Peter, the Trustees decided to confer Honorary Life Membership on Brian and Peter, and this was announced at the 2023 AGM, where they were invited to receive framed certificates to this effect.