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I watched my Wolverhampton Dad as he printed opera cards

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: April 20, 2014

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RE the Wolverhampton Opera Company article in The Bugle (April 3 edition). Once again I feel moved to write to you following reading an article in your magnificent paper.

I remember the Wolverhampton Opera Company very well as Mr Victor Cox, the musical director, was a member of our family church, Lea Road United Church, Wolverhampton. Mr Cox and my mother had worshipped there regularly since they met as young children attending Sunday School in the early 1920s.

My parents loved music, especially light opera such as Gilbert and Sullivan's work. The Wolverhampton Opera Company staged such productions frequently and we used to go as a family to see them.

I remember their production of Carmen by Bizet in particular, as my father, a gifted sign and ticket writer winning several scholarships to the Wolverhampton College of Art, was asked to print showcards and posters to be displayed in the Britannia Building Society in Queen Square, Wolverhampton, advertising the event.

As far as I know it was the only time that Mr Cox asked my Dad to do this for him. My Dad felt honoured and very proud. He wasted no time in setting up a makeshift printing workshop in the front room of our family home, 36 Lonsdale Road, Wolverhampton, as by that time he had retired from the sign writing trade and was employed as the admissions clerk at the Wolverhampton and Midland Counties eye infirmary.

Dad, being the professional he was, completed the work in just a few days. I, as a teenage girl watched him with awe applying his paintbrush so precisely. I had seen my Dad sign writing before, many times throughout my childhood, but this was a bit different.

I recall Mr Cox coming round to our house one Friday evening after our church choir practice, where Mr Cox sang bass.

He was absolutely delighted with my Dad's work.

When I was just a little older I joined the church choir as a soprano. Mr Cox had left the choir by then. He had suffered a really nasty car crash, he had severe head injuries which affected his memory. We didn't see him too often at church after that.

As ever I thank you for your truly fantastic paper.

Mrs Alison Russon,

(nee Redhead),

2 Teme Road,

Cradley,

Halesowen.

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