We were saddened to hear this week of the death of Malcolm Doley MBE who, as Lancashire’s Senior Advisor for Music, founded the Lancashire Schools Symphony Orchestra (now known as the Lancashire Youth Symphony Orchestra) in 1970. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and everyone who’s musical journey he has inspired. Throughout his time with the music service and in his retirement, Malcolm worked tirelessly to promote and champion music in Lancashire and, as the orchestra celebrates it’s 50th anniversary in March 2020, we will also be celebrating the life and contribution of it’s Founder Director.
Helen Harrison, Lancashire Youth Symphony Orchestra’s current Music Director and Conductor and former Leader of the Orchestra added, “I know I speak for so many musicians when I say that playing in the orchestra under Malcolm Doley’s leadership was one of the most important musical experiences of our lives. Malcolm’s drive and commitment to making music of the highest possible standard was at the heart of the orchestra’s success. His knowledge of repertoire and his ability to train an orchestra were second to none. His passion for the music always came through in rehearsals. I know we will all remember concerts where his emotional connection with the music inspired us to perform beyond our years and produce exceptional performances together as an orchestra.
I know that Malcolm’s musical legacy will continue in the musical values he inspired in so many musicians whose love of music has continued either as a career or a lifelong passion. In my own work with young people, particularly with the Lancashire Youth Symphony Orchestra, I am always conscious of the excellent musical training I received from Malcolm Doley and the life changing experience he provided and this continues to inspire me to give the very best possible experience to our young players.”
The photo is Malcolm Doley conducting the orchestra in a concert at Preston Guildhall in 1980 which was organised to raise money for the RNLI. The concert was a gesture of thanks to the Swedish rescue services after the orchestra were rescued from the ferry Winston Churchill when it ran aground during their summer tour in 1979.