The Irish Chamber Orchestra hosted a very special evening at the ICO studio on Saturday May 18, remembering the late John Kelly, former CEO of the Irish Chamber Orchestra. A large gathering of family and friends included John’s wife Ellen, his daughter Sarah Jane and many members of the extended Kelly family. ICO musicians with students from the Sing Out with Strings community programme performed a medley of music by the composer TC Kelly, John’s father.
Rounding off the string recital with flute, the Orchestra played an arrangement of the Orange Blossom Special by principal bass Malachy Robinson, a tune that “was John’s all time favourite and that he loved to murder when he played it,” according to current chief executive Gerard Keenan, hosting the reception.. More than 200 guests and Friends of the ICO supported the warm and emotional celebration. Then Gerard Keenan dedicated the ICO studio, purpose designed and built under John’s stewardship, to his memory. Daughter Sarah Jane Kelly unveiled a plaque to his memory which will hang in the studio, located on the outer reaches of the Plassey campus.