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The Gathering Wave Choirs - Remember 1914-1918

The Gathering Wave Choirs marked the centenary of the end of First World War with a special year-long project and final concert.


The Gathering Wave choirs from all around Herefordshire came together to honour those who suffered during the First World War, in the centenary year of the Armistice.


The concert took place on Friday 9th November 2018 at the Point4, Venns Lane, Hereford. A copy of the event flyer can be found below.

A programme of songs and readings of poetry and prose took us through a wide range of responses to the conflict. 

We honoured the suffering and sacrifice of the soldiers on the front, the women who played their part, as Red Cross nurses and munitions workers, and the local Herefordshire people who became involved. The songs, some well-known, some less so, reflected a variety of responses; the courage of the soldiers was honoured, the desire for peace expressed, the hard-hitting realities of life in the trenches displayed, and the wry humour of the serving soldiers recognised.

Local musician Jon Watson created two new items for the programme: “The Girls with Yellow Hands” - a song associated with the women who worked in Hereford's munitions factory – and a more substantial work “Passchendaele Sunshine” reflecting on what so many people gave up or had taken away by events over which they had no control. The event honoured those people to whom we all owe so much. Reflective and thoughtful in tone, rather than directly celebratory, the concert brought together the talents of many local people.


Community choirs: The Fire Choir, The Garrick Singers, The Kindle Singers, The Singing Tree, and The Gracenotes Choir

Project Concept and Design: Hilary Smallwood

Musical direction: Jon Watson, Hilary Smallwood, Olivia Preye, Dennis Schiavon

Baritone soloist: Joe Wong

Readers: Elizabeth Semper-O’Keefe, Tim Bannerman, Elissa Swinglehurst, Kath Hey, Margaret Oubridge, Dennis Schiavon

Local history research: Elizabeth Semper-O’Keefe

Project co-ordination: The Music Pool

We are grateful for the generous support of Hereford City Council and anonymous donors.

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