Tullamore Musical Society pay tribute following death of 'treasured' member

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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Tullamore Musical Society pay tribute following death of 'treasured' member

Catherine Gunning

Tullamore Musical Society has paid a heartfelt tribute following the recent death of 'treasured' member Catherine Gunning.

Tullamore Musical Society extended their deepest sympathies to the Gunning Family on the passing of their treasured member Catherine Gunning (Nee Duffin).

For over forty years Catherine and Mick Gunning have been a fixture in Tullamore Musical Society. "A true stalwart of Tullamore Musical Society and lover of musicals, Catherine and her family have enriched TMS with their dedication and support since its early years," a statement read.

The Gunnings' involvement with Tullamore Musical Society extends back to the 70s where both Catherine and her husband Mick were involved in several productions including Hungarian Songs & Viennese Dances in 1978.

Although Catherine displayed a great talent on stage, members and friends of Tullamore Musical Society will remember her reoccurring role front of house.

"Catherine was a warm, welcoming, diligent, humorous and a friendly face who welcomed people to the show year after year. In 1989, as house manager, her dedication and charisma were acknowledged at a national level when she won an AIMS (Association of Irish Musical Societies) Award for Pinafore," Mairéad Brennan, PRO of the Society said.

Following Catherine’s success her husband Mick won the same award in 2004 for Me and My Girl. Proving that they were a force to be reckoned with and one of Tullamore Musical Society's greatest commodities. The awards for the Gunning family did not stop there.

Their son Brian, who has been involved in roughly forty productions with Tullamore Musical Society is no stranger to AIMS success himself. Having received an abundance of nomination for Best Programme and as tradition would have it, winning best front of house for Man of La Mancha (2001).

However, not to be overlooked, Catherine was back in the spotlight again. After years of dedication and support to TMS, it was time that the favour was returned. In 2005, Tullamore Musical Society nominated Catherine for the Mary Kelly Unsung Hero Award for her unwavering support to TMS.

The award which recognises the involvement of our ‘behind the scenes’ members, members who are a vital component in the success of a show but don’t take a bow or get a standing ovation at the end.

"The support and dedication of the Gunning family is a true and rare gift and we are indebted to the years they have given us.
Catherine truly was one in a million, and now as the curtain falls, take your bow," Tullamore Musical Society concluded.