Last night saw the return of a club favourite, the Chairman's Gala Dinner. Attended by Alexander Downer, as well as Director-General Diana Owen and several members of ROSL's Central Council, it was the perfect opportunity to meet fellow members, enjoy fine wine, food, conversation and music.
Beginning with a drinks reception in the Hall of India and Pakistan, members and guests enjoyed bubbly and a non-alcoholic cocktail before heading down to the Princess Alexandra Hall for the dinner proper where everyone was welcomed from the stage by Dr Diana Owen OBE.
Starters of Tuna loin tartare and cauliflower cheese tarts got the evening off to a delicious start, before attendees were treated to a snapshot of the high calibre of musician that ROSL's art programme has produced.
Pianist Ashley Fripp, winner of the Keyboard Prize at the 2011 Annual Music Competition performed Caprice Espagnol by Maszkowski to cheers from the audience.
He was followed on stage by winner of the 2017 Roderick Lakin Professional Development Award for Singers Jennifer Whitton soprano and Ben-San Lau piano, where they performed movements from Korngold's Die Tote Stadt and Handel's Giulio Cesare. This expert music making was hugely appreciated in the room and is a testament to the support that members give to the art programme led by Geoff Parkin.
Mains of roast guinea fowl and salt baked celeriac ragu were followed by a highly entertaining address from ROSL Chairman Alexander Downer AC, Australia's longest serving Foreign Minister and former High Commissioner to the UK.
The evening was rounded out by desserts of chocolate truffle, passion fruit cheesecake and bakewell tarts; a selection of Kentish cheeses and biscuits; coffee and petit fours.
Keep an eye on www.rosl.org.uk/events to see what is coming up for the rest of the year and in 2020.