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Obituary: Rod Franks (1956–2014)


Principal Trumpet (1988–2013)

The London Symphony Orchestra is deeply saddened to learn of the death of Roderick (Rod) Franks – a member of the LSO’s trumpet section since 1988 – following a serious car accident in Nottinghamshire on Sunday 20 July 2014.

Having celebrated 25 years' service last year, 23 of which as Principal Trumpet, Rod had recently requested to step down from his Principal position but to continue playing with the Orchestra. Rod had been beset by health issues for over ten years but would never allow them to compromise his supreme professionalism. Hugely respected and immensely popular with members of the Orchestra, conductors and audience alike, Rod will be missed for his ever-welcoming friendliness and brilliant playing.

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Obituary: Roger Lord (1924–2014)


Principal Oboe (1953–1986)

The LSO is sad to hear of the death of former Principal Oboe Roger Lord on Thursday 19 June 2014. He had recently celebrated his 90th birthday and until then had been in very good health and enjoying life to the full.

Roger joined the LSO in 1953 as Principal Oboe. He was part of the famous resignation of Principals in 1955* but happily was persuaded to re-apply for his membership. He retired to Dorset in 1986, but remained an Associate Member until 1988.

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Obituary: Peter Francis (1927–2014)


Principal Contra Bassoon (1963–1992)

The LSO is sad to hear that Peter Francis passed away on 25 January 2014, peacefully at home in the Isle of Wight. He was 87.

Peter was a member of the Bassoon section from 1963 to 1992 becoming Principal Contra Bassoon in 1970. He served as a Director on the LSO Board from 1977 to 1980.

Obituary: Douglas Cummings (1947–2014)


Principal Cello (1969–1993)

The LSO is sad to hear of the death of former Principal Cello Douglas Cummings on Wednesday 14 May 2014.

Dougie was 22 when he joined the LSO as Principal Cello in 1969, the youngest Principal the Orchestra had appointed to that date. He left the Orchestra in 1993 to follow a teaching career. He served on the Board of Directors from 1979–82. Following a brain haemorrhage in 1982, Dougie was the subject of one of a series of four TV programmes, 'Life of an Orchestra', which was broadcast on BBC1.

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Obituary: Claudio Abbado (1933–2014)


The LSO is deeply saddened to hear of the death, on Monday 20 January 2014 at the age of 80, of its former Principal Conductor Claudio Abbado.

Abbado was the LSO's 12th Principal Conductor, succeeding André Previn in 1979, and holding the post until 1987. He also held the titles of Principal Guest Conductor (1975–79) and Music Director (1984–87).

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