Piano tribute to couple’s love of stage

Tricia Reid (Peter's Daughter) and Embassy Theatre Manager: Pollyanne Trapmore-Shaw.
Tricia Reid (Peter's Daughter) and Embassy Theatre Manager: Pollyanne Trapmore-Shaw.

A grand piano owned by a couple with a lifelong passion for the stage has found a fitting home at the Embassy Theatre in Skegness.

The piano has been given to the theatre in memory of Peter and Hilary Emmens by their family.

A deputy head teacher at the former Lumley Secondary Modern School Peter, who passed away in March aged 87, was a leading light in the local performing arts scene.

He performed with Hilary over several decades with the Skegness Playgoers, Skegness Operatic Society and Gaslight Singers.

Through his role as chairman of East Lincolnshire Arts Peter provided funding for the Arts Room at the Embassy Theatre.

Dating from 1890 the Bluthner piano was the pride and joy of Hilary who passed away eight years ago.

A top grade pianist and singing teacher she would accompany her students at the family home in Lifeboat Avenue.

Hilary’s daughter Tricia Reid said: “There could not be a better place for the piano. “It looks lovely and completely different to how it appeared in the lounge at home. When Peter was in his final years, and not too well, I would play familiar tunes to him.”

She added: “We are hoping to put a plaque on the piano and a photo of Peter and Hilary in one of their performances.

“It seems fitting that the piano is at the theatre and completes a circle giving something back to Skegness in their memory.”

The theatre’s programming and operations manager Pollyanne Trapmore-Shawsaid: “The Bluthner grand piano donated by Tricia and her family is not only an instrument of significance but a wonderful stately piece of furniture too.”

“It is currently undergoing a little restoration and we hope to be able to put it to good performance use in the near future and for the public to admire this handsome instrument up close.”