Magee 100th WebBannerCentennial

Music & Arts

How Do You Live?

Do you live to work or work to live? Most of us strive for a healthy balance. To this end, Magee has always provided an ample mix of music and arts in its activities.

Many of you will have fond memories and current interests as a result of participating in or enjoying the orchestra and jazz band, the choir, the annual play, a lunch hour bop or hi-jinx, etc.

Some of you will have carried these experiences into life-long endeavours and careers.

Let’s take a look at some of the paths taken.

Dal Richards Set A Guinness World Record At Magee

Dal RichardsWhen he lifted his baton and conducted the Magee Jazz Band on Thursday May 31 2012, legendary Vancouver band leader and Magee grad Dal Richards set a Guinness World Record for "Longest lapsed time between performances by a high school band leader."

An official Guinness adjudicator was present, and Guinness Board Chair, Jimmy Pattison, made the official presentation to Dal. It was almost 75 years to the day since Dal last led the band which he founded and led at his Magee graduation in May of 1937, a musical tradition and heritage which continues to this day.

For details of this very special event and how it evolved, refer "Newsletter and Current Events" link on the left of this page.

Dal Richards has had an amazing career, and his name has been synonymous with big band music and jazz in Vancouver since the late 1930’s.  Among his many accomplishments, he was the house band at the old Hotel Vancouver’s Panorama Roof for over 25 years, and has played at the PNE for 73 consecutive years. He led the original B.C. Lions’ marching band, and wrote the Lions theme song “Roar You Lions, Roar”. Over his long career, he has been instrumental in helping many young musicians and singers further their careers.

DalRichardsSaxAt an age when most of his contemporaries have long since retired or passed away, Dal maintains an active schedule, with over 100 musical and speaking engagements booked this year, and a weekly radio show on CISL 650. He has been awarded both the Order of British Columbia and the Order of Canada.


Dal Richards' Portrait (as described below by daughter Dallas)

Dal Richards Portrait

Andree Fleming alerted us that an artist in Vancouver had done a picture of Dad (quite abstract!) and it was hanging in a gallery in Kerrisdale in Vancouver. Andree found it particularly amusing because the picture was called "Dale Richard".

So, of course, we had to see it! Len and I went to his sister Jo's birthday party in Vancouver this weekend (May 2013) and Dad and I went for brunch on Saturday at the Avenue Grill in Kerrisdale and with the express purpose of going across the street after brunch to see the painting!

We walked in and the owner was quite taken aback that "the subject" had arrived to look at the painting! He insisted on taking Dad's photo next to the painting and he sent it to us.

Dad, you'll be happy to know, gave him two business cards: one for the owner of the gallery and one to give to the polish/Canadian artist who needed to bring more purple paint to the gallery to correct his misspelling!


For more fascinating details vist Dal's website

Dal has agreed to be Honorary Patron for the May 2014 Magee Centennial Celebration which is now being planned!