On Sunday 27 July, the UK will participate in a global moment marking the last day of peace in Europe in 1914.
This international initiative is part of the Italian Government’s WW1 Commemoration programme. Remembrance music will be performed around the world as a symbolic act of commemoration; to remember the fallen and to pay tribute to their sacrifice.
The event will begin in Italy with a lone trumpeter playing ‘Silenzio’ (equivalent to the ‘Last Post’). Other countries taking part include the USA, South Africa, France, Albania, Hungary, Portugal and Greece.
In the UK, at the invitation of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (NYOGB) will join forces with World War 1 Centenary initiative, The Last Post project.
The NYOGB’s brass ensemble will perform the ‘Last Post’ in a special arrangement, combining the poignant music of this final salute with the moving hymn ‘Abide with Me’. This will take place at the Library of Birmingham at 3pm.
The five-strong ensemble of trumpet, horns, tuba and cornet is drawn from the 165 members of NYOGB – one of the world’s foremost youth orchestras – and will include the BBC Young Musician of the Year finalist and BBC Radio 2 Young Brass Award winner, Matilda Lloyd.
The NYOGB will be playing The Last Post for those who gave their lives for their countries during WW1, and also the Rev. David Railton, the originator of the Tomb to the Unknown Warrior and the father of the Orchestra’s founder Dame Ruth Railton.
The Last Post project invites communities to research and discover their own First World War stories. The stories are then shared and marked at commemorative events during the Last Post fortnight, 4-18 November and at each event, the Last Post will be played in tribute on a variety of instruments as selected by the community.
Virginia Crompton, Executive Producer, The Last Post project, said:
The Last Post project will help local communities explore and understand their First World War stories through music, a powerful and accessible vehicle for Remembrance. It is an honour for The Last Post project to be representing the UK with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and all of us at Superact feel privileged that the project’s first performance will be part of this international commemoration.
Sarah Alexander, Director of National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, said:
As Britain’s only truly national orchestra it is wonderful to represent the UK in this international commemoration of the last day of peace 100 years on and a great privilege to be invited. We are proud too to be launching The Last Post project and hope many other musicians - regardless of backgrounds, instruments or level, will have the chance to remember WW1 with this touching music.
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