Vale Richard Divall AO OBE (Updated)
The V.H.P.B.A. and P.B.V. regret the death of distinguished Victorian musician, conductor and teacher Professor Richard Divall AO OBE on Sunday 15th January. He had a great influence on music in Victoria, particularly with his leadership of the Victorian State Opera. He was a friend of the late Sir Rupert Hamer, VHPBA’s first Chieftain. In the 1980s, Richard Divall proposed the establishment of the Sir Rupert Hamer Award for service and dedication to the Scottish Pipe Band movement. On approval, he raised the initial funding and organised the annual nominations and selection. Earlier Certificates are signed by Sir Rupert, and counter-signed by Richard.
We recognise his great service to music in Victoria, we remember his support and interest, and we will miss him.
Update (from Margaret Johnstone OAM, thank you Margaret)
Today I went to Richard Divall’s funeral service which was a Requiem Mass , in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne. I signed myself in as Pipe Bands Vic. It was a massive crowd a magnificent service with 10 concelebrants (Bishops/priests). Our Chieftain, Ted Baillieu was also in attendance.
Readers were Lady Potter AC, Mr Campbell Thomas AM and Professor John Griffiths.
The music blew me away the State Orchestra, 2 Opera singers, the organ was loud and hair raising not to mention the organist. And a massive choir .
Sir James Gobbo AC CVO was the “words of Remembrance ”( Eulogy )
Richard was the driving force behind obtaining financial assistance to implement the Sir Rupert Hamer Award for the V.H.P.B.A. The foundation Richard successfully applied to obtain the money from for the Hamer Award was “The Buckland Foundation” who paid for the trophy and certificates.
Richard was 70, he died 15th January from Cancer. Last September when he was wheel chair bound they wheeled him onto the stage at Hamer Hall & the applause was deafening. He was a judge of the Sun Aria Contest for about 15 years.
Another nice thing Sir James Gobbo said in his last hours in care 5 Carmelite Nuns circled his bed and sang his favourite song (can’t remember what!) and during the song he took his last breath.
He was also:
Knight of Justice of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta Professed of Solemn Vows.
Commander of the Order pro Merito Melitensi
Officer of the Order of Australia
Officer of the Order of the British Empire
Officer of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem
Knight jure sanguinis of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St George.