Family man, educator, musicologist, opera aficionado and dear friend, Archie “Tony” Julian serenely passed-away of natural causes on Sunday, September 26, 2021. He was 99 years-old. He is survived by his two step-daughters, Natalie Prantil (Richard) and Helene Hunt.
Tony was born on May 09, 1922 in San Diego, CA, where he grew up, attended San Diego High School, San Diego State University, and lived almost his entire life. After mustering-out of the United States Navy at the conclusion of World War II, Tony continued his education, obtaining a California State teaching credential. He was immediately hired by the San Diego Unified School District, concluding his 37 year career at Patrick Henry High School, the “Home of the Patriots”, which Tony certainly was.
A devoted secondary education teacher, Tony strove to get the best out of his students, some of which remained friends and in regular contact long after their graduation. Tony had three distinct loves in his life: His family, teaching others and his love of the fine arts – especially opera and classical vocal music, of which he was a scholar. In his younger days, Tony could be found using his own classical vocal training in his many local performances.
In the 1980’s Tony initiated a regular series of “Musicales” held at his home wherein he, his wife of 53 years -Trudy, and a small group of fellow music lovers enjoyed listening to and commenting on commercial and live performance recordings. Tony was a gracious host at these events. When he remarried after Trudy’s passing, he introduced his wife, Tanya, to his musical friends, and continued the “Musicale” tradition in their home as well. He continued to give musical dissertations to always engaged listeners up to his 98th year.
Tony’s favorite composers, whose lives he studied thoroughly, were Verdi, Donizetti and Bellini. He would regularly be seen in the audience at San Diego Opera, Los Angeles Opera and San Francisco Opera, often attending consecutive performances should he think highly of the production and vocalism.
Tony was also an accomplished portrait artist whose subjects included celebrated opera stars and occasional landscapes. He held art shows late in life and enjoyed sharing his work with others.
Through his life-long commitment to the study of the performing arts, Tony amassed a considerable collection of music dating from the 1890’s to his last acquisition in 2020. Tony was always eager to hear new talent, thoughtfully making assessments of these new comers in comparison to those of an earlier era, many of which he had also heard live in the United States and through his trips to Europe.
After Tanya’s passing, Tony moved to Lantern Crest Senior Living, where he was well known for his opera collection and continued sharing his knowledge by giving several presentations to the community, and also holding an art exhibit of some of his favorite paintings. He was known for his bright smile, palette of purple shirts, red scooter, passion for a great dessert, and love of a good martini!
Tony was devoted to his second wife, Tanya, his adopted daughters, granddaughters and the close group of like-minded friends. He is deeply missed and will be forever remembered for his strong beliefs and love of life.
Rest In Peace, dearest friend.