Tragic Occurrence at a concert.
death of ‘Andy’ blanchard, the vocalist.
“Their heads nestled closer Together”.
[Press Telegraph Association]
The fourth annual concert under the auspices of the Dapto Agricultural and Horticultural Society, held last night in the Society’s Hall, Dapto, partook of a sensational character. One of the performers, Mr, Andrew Blanchard, licensee of the Mansion House Hotel, Haymarket, Sydney, a well-known and highly-esteemed vocalist, dropped dead on the stage.
Mr. Blanchard, who appeared to be in excellent health, had given a pathetic rendering of the song “Their Heads Nestled Closer Together,” and immediately after singing the last verse, descriptive of the father and mother’s sorrow at lowering their child into the grave, Mr. Blanchard fell forward and rolled off the stage into the body of the hall, striking one of the audience in his descent, which, however, saved his fall top some extent. He was picked up and conveyed into an ante room where it was found life was extinct, death being due to hemorrhage of the brain.
The attendance at the concert was exceedingly large, and owing to the tragic circumastances and the terrible shock the entertainment came to an abrupt termination.
–The Maitland Daily Mercury Thursday 7 October 1897
A FURTHER shock was experienced by the many friends of the Blanchard family who remember poor Andy Blanchard’s awfully sudden death while singing “Their Heads Nestled Close Together,” about a couple of years back, when the news spread during the week that his widow had also died suddenly at her residence, the Manor House Hotel, George-Street. Mrs Catherine Blanchard was only 40 years of age, and may be said to have actually died from shock and grief at her beloved husband’s tragic end, for they were a model couple. The remains were interred on Saturday in the R.C. Cemetery, Waverley, the funeral being very largely attended….
– Truth (Sydney, NSW : 1894 – 1954) Sunday 17 September 1899