Frans Bayetz, better known as Francis Bay, has died last night at the age of 91. Francis Bay was conductor of the Belgian National Radio and Television Orchestra and conducted many Flemish Belgian entries at the Eurovision Song Contest.
Francis Bay followed musical education at the conservatorium of Mechelen and started his musical career at the orchestra of Paul Godwin. In 1948 he formed his own orchestra and in the middle of the 50's he became the leader of the orchestra of the National Radio broadcast Institute (NIR).
Francis Bay produced many albums and composed theme songs for game and entertainment programmes on BRT (now VRT). As conductor of the National Radio and Television Orchestra Francis Bay conducted the orchestra at the Flemish national selection shows Canzonissima.
Francis Bay conducted many of the Flemish Belgian entries to the Eurovision Song Contest, starting in 1959. Furthermore he was on stage of the contest in 1961, 1963, 1967, 1969, 1971, 1973, 1975 and a last time in 1979.