Obituary: Bob Lappin, Palm Beach Pops music director and pianist, 78

Posted on: August 23, 2013

“W. Robert ‘Bob’ Lappin, the pianist, music director and conductor of the Palm Beach Pops orchestra, died Monday night in Boston, Mass., of heart failure. He was 78,” reports Phillip Valys in Thursday’s (8/22) Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Florida). “A lifelong guardian of the Great American Songbook, … Mr. Lappin turned his orchestra, which plays concerts throughout Palm Beach County, into a leading winter attraction. Recalling Mr. Lappin’s good-humored personality, Palm Beach Pops executive director David Quilleon says the maestro was a man who ‘rehearsed constantly’ and crowned every Pops performance by playing Sammy Fain and Irving Kahal’s ‘I’ll Be Seeing You’ on the piano.… Born in Boston and raised in Middletown, Conn., Mr. Lappin signed with Music Corporation of America after graduating from Ithaca College in Ithaca, N.Y.… Mr. Lappin founded the Palm Beach Pops in 1991 and hosted its first concert in 1992 at the former Palm Beach County Auditorium in West Palm Beach.… Over the years, Mr. Lappin lured several musical movers and shakers to perform with his orchestra, including Mel Torme, Lena Horne, Jack Jones, Vic Damone, Judy Collins, Kenny Rogers and Clint Holmes.… Quilleon says the board has yet to meet to decide if the Palm Beach Pops’ current season”—scheduled to open on November 9—“will continue.”

Posted August 23, 2013