Paul Poppy - 2007 Recipient

 Paul Poppy

Paul Poppy - Keyboard Technician, Don Wright Faculty of Music

There is no length to which Paul Poppy will not go to ensure students, staff or faculty are taken care off – from the regular attention paid to the many keyboards in the faculty even to loaning students much needed furniture upon their arrival.

Poppy's primary focus is the "care and feeding" of a growing collection of period instruments including harpsichords, clavichords and fortepianos. Music Performance Studies Professor Sandra Mangsen says Poppy’s expertise with historical keyboard instruments has allowed for early music instruction at Western.

From his early arrival on campus to tune pianos, to the many deeds that are not “in his job description” – such as driving to Montreal in an ice storm to pick up an instrument – Poppy is recognized as someone who quietly does what needs to be done.

“My life as a professor in the Music faculty is made much richer and infinitely more pleasant with Paul on hand,” says Mangsen. “He is unfailingly polite, friendly and ready to help in whatever way he can. He is one of our treasures.”

Attentive to others’ needs, Poppy was caught him off guard in receiving the Award of Excellence.

“I wasn't even aware that the selection process was taking place,” admits Poppy. “It is extremely gratifying to know the work we do is appreciated by the students and faculty. To make the music faculty work the way it does requires a lot of cooperation between staff, students and faculty members.”

In addition, Poppy maintains an active private client list as well as keeping his hand in performing as music director and organist of Bishop Cronyn Church in London.

By Paul Mayne

Western News