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Y7 Pupils Perform in Somme Commemoration Concert

Friday, 01 July 2016

Year 7 pupils James Hopkinson and Olivia Sample had a busy day on Friday as members of a national children’s choir drawn from the Halle Children’s choir and choirs from Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Manchester played host to the national commemoration of the Centenary of the Battle of the Somme. Earlier in the day there was a service in Manchester Cathedral attended by Prince Andrew and then a wagon parade had taken tiles to Heaton Park to form the final part of the Path of the Remembered memorial walk. 

The children’s choir opened the concert in Heaton Park with World War One war songs interspersed with archive film and diary entries depicting the lives of those affected by the Somme. Olivia said “It was the greatest honour to be part of the Somme 100 National Choir commemorating those who fought for us and lost their lives; singing for thousands of people who had waited for us for hours in the rain.  As we took to the stage a rainbow appeared in the sky and we sang our hearts out.”

James remarked “It was a great opportunity to be invited to commemorate the centenary of the Battle of the Somme and to do so with choirs from around the UK was very special.  It was definitely worth the cold hours we spent rehearsing in the park.”

The concert also featured a dance piece inspired by the Pals Battalions and the Halle Orchestra conducted by Sir Mark Elder.  The evening concluded the day of commemoration and had an audience of 19,244, the same number as those who died on the first day of the battle. 

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The evening concert was part of the national commemoration

The evening concert was part of the national commemoration