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war requiem in flanders

Just returned from a short tour to Belgium with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) Chorus performing Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem.

There were  three concerts with the Royal Flemish Philharmonic under Martyn Brabbins in Antwerp, Ghent (on Remembrance Day), and Bruges.

All three performances received standing ovations, and were very moving occasions.

But perhaps the most memorable aspect of the tour was a visit to two war cemeteries – a German one at Vladslo, and an Allied one at Tyne Cot – on 11th November.

Tyne Cot visit on Facebook

Grandfather fought in World War One and Dad was born in the Summer of 1919. I’m currently reading Jeanette Winterson’s memoir ‘Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?’ (Jonathan Cape) and her Dad was also a 1919 baby.

A generation conceived and born to celebrate the end of the Great War, called up in 1939 for the next war.

 

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