Senior music producer at the BBC marks 25 years at Christ Church

Richard Yarr (left) is pictured as he accepted the award on behalf of John from Michael O'Keefe, CEO Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.
Iain White Photography.
Richard Yarr (left) is pictured as he accepted the award on behalf of John from Michael O'Keefe, CEO Broadcasting Authority of Ireland. Iain White Photography.

A local music producer is celebrating 25 years as the Director of Music at Christ Church, Lisburn.

Richard Yarr has been in the role since 1992 and is also the Senior Producer for Classical Music with BBC Northern Ireland.

The church is celebrating it’s 175th anniversary and Richard joined when it was marking its 150th year.

He said: “Marking 25 years of work there, I really enjoy it, the people have become my family. I started when I was 18.

“It is a huge commitment, every Thursday there is choir practice and then the service is on a Sunday but it is very rewarding. I’m very proud to reach 25 years in one place and during the time I have seen things develop.

“I have seen some of the choir members go on to become music teachers. Music can touch people where words just stop. I get something out of playing the music, that’s why I go. It’s very much a connected thing for me.”

During his career, Richard has proven he has many strings to his bow, taking up countless roles including creating BBC Radio Ulster School Choir of the Year in 2015.

Richard added: “I created the programme here for BBC NI, it’s amazing, it’s one of the things I love most about the job I do.

“Hearing the talent out there and travelling all around the country, especially seeing what it means for the younger kids.” He is currently celebrating as his team BBC Radio Ulster/Radio Foyle picked up seven golds at the IMRO awards earlier this month. Richard read music at Queen’s University and graduated with First Class Honours, and the May Turtle Scholarship for academic excellence, in 1992.

He then gained a choral scholarship to King’s College London, where he completed a Master of Music Degree, before returning to Queen’s to undertake Doctoral studies.

Since 2000 Richard has been producing for BBC Radio Ulster and Radio 3. He is currently responsible for Ulster Orchestra content on BBC platforms, chamber music recorded across Ireland and local broadcasts of Choral Evensong. He also oversees BBC Radio Ulster’s weekly classical music show.

And he is sought after as an adjudicator,