Digital program - Mehta-Abaeva

IN MEMORIAM LADY ROSLYN LYONS Born in 1923 in Montreal, Canada, Roslyn was the daughter of eminent ophthalmologist Dr. Jacob Rosenbaum. She was a singer and had trained under the Canadian opera singer Pauline Donalda. In 1943 she married Jack Lyons from Leeds, who was in Montreal during the war, and at the end of 1945 the couple returned to Leeds to rejoin family and business. As her young children were growing, she gave much of her time to the development of music and the arts in Leeds. One of her first roles was as a member of the Ladies Council of the Yorkshire Symphony Orchestra under Norman Del Mar. She became Chairman of the Social Committee of the Leeds Music Festival founded in 1858 and immediately worked towards making the 100th anniversary a special event. Her proudest achievement was bringing the Festival back to health, and for the centenary Festival in 1958 Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh attended. During this time Roslyn developed a friendship with Marion, Countess of Harewood, the wife of The Earl of Harewood, one of Britain's best known patrons of the arts and cousin to the Queen. She arranged a series of concerts at Harewood House, with such artists as Rubinstein and Milstein. She and her family moved to London but she maintained her strong ties with Leeds and its musical life. In 1961 her friend Fanny Waterman had the vision to create a world class piano competition in Leeds. Roslyn gave her immediate support. The first competition was in 1963 and continues after more than 60 years. Roslyn went on to support, with her husband, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and the Israel Philharmonic, as well as many educational programmes for young musicians and dancers in London. Her love of classical music and playing the piano for her own enjoyment carried on all her life. In later years she would attend concerts and the opera, and always stayed close to the music world. The Israel Philharmonic and Zubin Mehta were particularly close to her heart. She was predeceased by Jack in 2008 and passed away in Switzerland on April 1st 2014.