Limerick loses a true friend of the arts in Tony Rodgers whose work 'enriched lives'

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Limerick loses a true friend of the arts in Tony Rodgers whose work 'enriched lives'

Tony Rodgers, right, with Cllr Jerome Scanlan on the occasion of the civic reception in 2013

THE FRIENDS and family of Tony Rodgers, from Limerick, have lost a loved one but countless artists have lost an inspiration.

Aged 81, the Castletroy man passed away in the Galway Clinic on Sunday. While his career was in banking, he managed to combine his love of arts with crunching numbers.

Tony was a founding member of the committee running Eva International and the jazz society. He was also instrumental in the success of the Castleconnell classical concerts.

As well as a love of music and art, Tony was a keen and talented photographer. 

In 2013, the council presented an honorary scroll to Tony in recognition of his “extraordinary contribution, commitment and dedication to the county's arts programmes” and to acknowledge the “magnificent and life defining difference he made to so many people in County Limerick.” 

Joan MacKernan, former County Limerick arts officer, said Tony was a wonderful supporter of her work in the county and “his work enriched the lives of so many people - those of us fortunate enough to know him and countless who didn’t”.

“He photographed a number of council calendars, he undertook a photo documentary of the building of County Hall spanning two years, and he also assisted with lighting at various events. He had a number of photographic exhibitions with the county arts office. His last exhibition was in Friars Gate Theatre in October 2016,” said Joan. 

One of Tony’s photos is an an apt metaphor for his life.

“One time when he was in New York he took a photo of this piano stool that was on a sidewalk and was painted like a piano. Under the keys was written, ‘play the song that you hear in your heart’ and when he lifted the lid of the stool were the words ‘and make beautiful music’,” said Joan.   

She said Tony gave of himself so generously and it was all voluntary – all for the betterment of the arts in County Limerick.

Beloved husband of the late Berna, brother of the late Frank and dearly loved father of Bryan, Aoife, Alan and Duncan. He is sadly missed by his children and their partners Romina, Suz, Steph and Blanca, grandchildren Cian, Conor, Nicolas and Julie, brother Patrick, sisters Mary, Clare and Jean, his partner Dorothy, nephews, nieces, relatives and his many close friends. Removal to Our Lady Help of Christians Church, Milford, Castletroy this Monday evening, arriving at 8pm.

Requiem Mass on Tuesday at 11am with funeral afterwards to St Nicholas Cemetery, Adare. May he rest in peace.