Saturday 15th to
Further information to follow nearer the time.
Other Events of Interest
Friend or Foe? Voices from World War One
Three plays by John Drinkwater
Tuesday 26 April (time tbc),
University of Hertfordshire event
Weston Auditorium, DeHavilland Campus, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, AL10 9EU.
Thursday 28 April, 2pm, as part of the conference: ‘
Pack Up Your Troubles: Performance Cultures in the First World War’
Aphra Theatre, University of Kent, Canterbury, CT2 7NZ.
Friend or Foe? presents authentic voices from the first world war. Each play tells a very different story, and reveals the range of attitudes the war evoked at the time. These powerful plays demonstrate the playwrights of the war have a voice which was equal in strength to that of the poets, challenging perceived ideas of manhood, womanhood, social order and authority. The three plays presented during the evening, alongside music and poetry of the era, are:
- X=0 by John Drinkwater
- Black ’Ell by Miles Malleson
- The Munition Worker by Lady Aimée Byng Hall Scott
Richard Simkin writes: “I saw this performance on the opening night in Stratford in March. John Drinkwater’s X=0 was first produced at the Birmingham Rep in 1917. This production is the first for many years, and stands well between two other short plays of the time. A talented and hardworking cast brought life and meaning to Drinkwater’s drama and interesting casting emphasised his message of the futility of war. The whole evening was thought-provoking and moving. This is the first performance of this Drinkwater play for many years.”
Directed by Peter Malin, the cast of Fred’s production is: Nathan Blyth, Emmeline Braefield, Mollie Fyfe Taylor, Charlie Ives, James Parsons, Peter M. Smith, and Barbara Treen.
“All three plays are fascinating,” says Fred’s artistic director Robert F. Ball, “and they give us a real insight in to the thoughts and feelings of people who lived through the Great War. Especially interesting is the previously not staged The Munition Worker which presents a view of the war, and a woman’s contribution to the war effort that makes us feel distinctly uncomfortable at the start of the twenty-first century.” This is a must see play for anyone who really wants to understand how our forebears felt about the war.
For more background information see Fred’s blog. This will present a series of posts on these extraordinary works, their playwrights and the context in which they were written.
A Sense of Place
Twentieth century landscape paintings
Until 8th May 2016
An exhibition of the very best of our twentieth century landscape paintings as well as a chance to see the huge Reading Tapestries by John Piper. The exhibition includes thirty paintings by some of the best-known British artists such as Eric Ravilious, Paul Nash, Joan Eardley and David Bomberg. Places depicted are rural and urban landscapes as far afield as New York and Mexico. The artworks are accompanied by an extraordinary set of poems made by nationally respected poets in response to individual paintings and craft objects by local makers who each chose a painting as inspiration.
Admission is free. Click here for opening times.
The English Years of Robert Frost
A performance by Gabriel Woolf & Linda Hart
Wednesday 11th May at 8.00pm
“... Two roads diverged in a wood and I –
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.”
From The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost (1874-1963)
The great American poet Robert Frost first achieved poetic recognition while living in Beacons field from 1912 to 1914. He was 38 years old when he left his farm and teaching job in New Hampshire, so that he would have time to concentrate on writing poetry. His first two books of poetry were published in London. By the time he left England in 1915, his poetic reputation was established.
This performance explores the English years of Robert Frost. Linda Hart describes his life in Beaconsfield, how he found a publisher in London, the poets he met and his time in the Gloucestershire countryside. But the story will mainly be told through Gabriel Woolf’s evocative readings of Frost’s poems and letters from this period. This event will recreate the three most important years in Frost’s life – the years that made all the difference.
Tickets are £9 for adults, £3 for under-18s.
For tickets, please go to the Chalfont St Giles Literary Festival Box Office.
Eleanor Farjeon: Something I Remember
Talk by Anne Harvey
Monday 4th July, 6pm.
Something I Remember is the title of one of Eleanor Farjeon’s best-loved poems. Anne Harvey’s talk will reveal the skill and surprising diversity of the writer who wrote poetry, plays and novels for adults and children and a moving memoir of her close friendship with Edward Thomas. She won three major awards: the Carnegie Medal, the Hans Andersen Award and the American Regina Medal, but despite her success as a writer, she refused the offer to become a Dame. The Eleanor Farjeon Award is given annually in her memory. The road in Ledbury, named after her, places her with Thomas and Frost in that much recalled Summer of 1914 before “August brought the war”.
Anne Harvey has been an actress, managed a repertory theatre, written and presented a variety of radio programmes. Her book Adlestrop Revisited was launched in Ledbury.
For more information, please see the Ledbury Poetry Festival’s website.