Peter Witherly’s life and enduring impact on countless people in Prince Rupert will be celebrated in the way he would have loved most, with music filling the Lester Centre auditorium.
“It’s going to be quite an appropriate way to remember Peter,” said Crystal Lorette, manager of the Lester Centre. “His legacy will definitely live on in music.”
A memorial concert in Witherly’s memory will take place on Friday, June 8 at the Lester Centre of the Arts. The show, entitled “The Music Lives On” begins at 7 p.m. and will feature 13 local musical groups, all of whom were impacted by Witherly in some way. Out of town musicians, who were either taught by Witherly or played with him, will also be returning to perform.
Lorette said the response she’s seen on social media to news of the concert has been overwhelmingly positive, a testament to the work Witherly did in over 47 years as a musician, teacher, mentor and friend for so many in Prince Rupert.
“There’s a lot of groups that Peter influenced over the years, and he was still active with a lot of them,” said Crystal Lorette, manager of the Lester Centre. “I expect this building to be packed.”
In addition to the planned performances, Lorette said there will be an opportunity at the end of the concert for anyone with an instrument to come on stage and play the final song, also titled “The Music Lives On.” The sheet music for the song will be posted online, and Lorette asked that anyone planning to play in the concert contact the Lester Centre ahead of time so that ample seating can be arranged on stage.
Entry to the concert will be by donation at the door with all proceeds are going to help pay the balance of the Peter Witherly Community Music Studio.
Doors open at 6 p.m., and seating will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. There will also be a reception after the concert in the Lester Centre’s lobby.
Michael Gurney will be the event’s MC.
For those who cannot attend the concert, CityWest will live stream the event, and it will also be broadcast on channel 10 and 310.