22 & 23 – Falkirk Tryst Orchestra conducted by Robert Tait
Date – 6th October 2016, 7:00 pm (open schools rehearsal)
Date – 7th October 2016, 7:30 pm
Venue – Falkirk Town Hall, Falkirk, FK1 5RS
A sold out performance by the Falkirk Tryst Orchestra in Falkirk town hall. A piper played as people entered the building and a there was a exhibition of stories of local connections to the Somme battle in the Foyer. Laura Rossi and Dr. Toby Haggith gave a pre-concert talk and the orchestra and conductor did a fantastic job of performing with the film. The orchestra also put on a performance for school children the day before.
A Welcome from the Falkirk Tryst Orchestra President
Good evening and welcome to this very special occasion. Falkirk Tryst Orchestra is privileged to take part in this commemoration of the Battle of the Somme. There are to be 100 showings of this film, throughout the UK and further afield, during this centenary year, with live orchestral accompaniment. This is the first performance in Scotland.
It is difficult to comprehend the scale of this battle and the magnitude of the loss of life. Members of families across the country including Falkirk and indeed, the families of orchestra members, took part in the battle. My own grandfather served there with The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. Fortunately, he survived the battle uninjured, but was shot and invalided home from the Battle of Vimy Ridge in 1917. Lots of your families will have a story of a relative passed down through several generations and many with a less fortunate outcome.
My sincere thanks go to all those who have worked to make this event possible. Finally I would like to thank you for coming. I am sure that you will have a very moving and thought provoking evening.
John Paterson President, Falkirk Tryst Orchestra
Listen to BBC Radio Scotland interview with Laura Rossi and members of the Falkirk Tryst Orchestra:
A Message from the Conductor
It is a great honour to conduct the performance for tonight’s screening of the Battle of the Somme (1916) with music commissioned by the Imperial War Museum from composer, Laura Rossi. Myself and the orchestra have a great sense of responsibility in that this is the first screening in Scotland with the live music.
This has been a major undertaking for Falkirk Tryst Orchestra and I am grateful to them for the additional rehearsals they have attended to bring this event to fruition. I would also like to thank the joint steering committee made up of representatives from Falkirk Tryst Orchestra and Falkirk Community Trust for all the work they have done behind the scenes.
We hope you appreciated the playing of piper, Neil Clark, who set the scene as you arrived for tonight’s performance and I know that you will be moved by the story of his bagpipes.
Preparing and rehearsing a new work is always a challenge. It asks questions and poses problems, not the least for the conductor working with a click track (hence the head phones in case you think I have become deaf!). However, Laura’s score was very clear and the end result was a tting accompaniment to a moving lm.
I hope you will be pleased with tonight’s performance.
Robert Tait, Conductor, Falkirk Tryst Orchestra
Neil Clark’s Bagpipes – The Story
On arrival at this evenings’ event you were greeted by the wonderful bagpipe playing of Neil Clark. Neil brought the set of pipes that he was playing a couple of years ago. When one of his pupils noticed a name and address on the inside of the box that the pipes were kept in, he began to uncover the fascinating story of this particular set.
The pipes were bought in Glasgow in 1908 by a member of the Pipe Band of the Atholl Highlanders (who in 1914 became the Pipes and Drums of the Scottish Horse). It is known that the pipes were played in Gallipoli in 1915 and then Salonika (where the Pipes and Drums of the Scottish Horse became the 13th Batallion of the Black Watch) before arriving in the Somme area.