FYCB launches GoFundMe campaign for European Tour

https://www.gofundme.com/the-039silent-anzac039-european-fund

The Footscray-Yarraville City Band is travelling to Europe in this November to commemorate the centenary of the Armistice of World War 1.

With this in mind, today we launch the band’s fundraising appeal.  This is an opportunity for our family, friends and the greater Australian and New Zealand community to be involved in this once in a lifetime event.

The trip is almost entirely funded by the members of the band. This campaign will cover the costs of transporting our WW1 bass drum back to Europe, cover the costs of our solo artists,  pay for venue and rehearsal hire whilst we’re away and facilitate other performance-related expenses.

Performances of our critically acclaimed show, ‘The Silent ANZAC‘, will be the cornerstone of the tour with performances at Amiens Cathedral, Australia House, and Southwark Cathedral. The Silent ANZAC intertwines the story of the Australian submarine, the AE2, with other stories of love and loss from The Great War.

We will also be performing at the ‘Last Post Ceremony’ at Menin Gate, which will be live-streamed back to Australia.

A wreath-laying ceremony will be held at the Australian National Memorial in Villers-Bretonneux.  The band will play Abide with Me and The Last Post whilst wreaths are laid. If you, your family or workplace wish to have a wreath laid on your behalf please click here, or contact Lorraine Wright, our Fundraising Coordinator, on 9578 3113 or 0415 138 148.  This ceremony will be live-streamed back to Australia and posted to the internet for later viewing.

The Silent ANZAC European Tour Fundraising Launch

The Footscray-Yarraville City Band – with the assistance and support of Victorian High Commissioner, Ken Ryan AM and James Hancock of the Tait Foundation – will be travelling to Europe in November to commemorate the centenary of the Armistice.

With this in mind, today we launch the band’s fundraising appeal.  This is an opportunity for our family, friends and the greater Australian and New Zealand community to be involved in this once in a lifetime event. 

Performances of our critically acclaimed show, The Silent ANZAC will be the cornerstone of the tour with performances at Amiens Cathedral, Australia House, and Southwark Cathedral. The Silent ANZAC intertwines tells the story of  the Australian submarine, The AE2 with other stories of love and loss from The Great War. 

We will also be performing at the ‘Last Post Ceremony’ at Menin Gate which will be live-streamed back to Australia. 

A wreath laying ceremony will be held at the Australian National Memorial in Villers-Bretonneux.  The band will play Abide with Me and The Last Post whilst wreaths are laid. If you, your family or workplace wish to have a wreath laid on your behalf please contact Lorraine Wright, our Fundraising Coordinator, on 9578 3113 or 0415 138 148.  This ceremony will be live-streamed back to Australia and posted to the internet for later viewing. 

Our new CD, The Endless Silence, tells The Silent ANZAC story, featuring William McInnes as the Poet, Margaret Haggart as the Mother, Danielle Matthews as the Girl, Joe Stanley as the Soldier and Jamie Lawson as the Bandsman. It is available through our website for $20 plus $5 p/h. 

Next week will see our Crowdfunding kick off with a campaign to pay for our WWI bass drum and four soloists to travel to Europe for the tour. 

Tax deductible donations toward the band can be made through the VBL ROCO account (put “Footscray Yarraville City Band” in the recipient’s description):

Account Name: Victorian Bands League Inc Public Account

BSB: 013-481

Account Number: 2527-64584

Smaller donations can be made by clicking the donate button at the bottom of the page.

You can also support the band by attending our show The Silent ANZAC.

It’s such a fantastic time to be a part of this wonderful band and we really hope you’ll join us on this once in a century opportunity.

The Silent Anzac to be performed at Exhibition Hall, Australia House, London

We are currently arranging with officials in London to put on a performance of The Silent Anzac at Australia House on Remembrance Day, 11/11/18. This performance will take place in the famous Exhibition Hall which was used for the set of the Gringotts Bank in the Harry Potter movies. The 160 foot hall is decorated with 1200 tons of intricately patterned Australia Marble. Mr Ken Ryan AM, Agent-General for Victoria to the UK, is supporting the band in this endeavour and we are also receiving assistance from Ms Claire Thomas, Business Manager for Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, Victorian State Government, in making arrangements for the concert. It is fantastic that the Silent Anzac tour is receiving this kind of support and we would like to acknowledge and thank these people.

Lions Club Project Partners

We are pleased to announce that the Lions Club has come on board as Silent Anzac project partners with a generous donation of $2,000. Many thanks to the Lions Club and also to our Fundraising Coordinator Lorraine Wright whose diligent work is paying dividends for the project. Our fundraising goal of $50k is achievable with the support of everyone. Be sure to get involved. A new social media fundraising campaign is set to be announced soon so get ready to spread the word.

Become a part of The Silent ANZAC Project

Footscray-Yarraville City Band is looking for enthusiastic friends of the band to be involved this important project. We are looking for assistance in all areas such as:

• Publicity and marketing
• Sponsorship
• Fundraising
• Project management
• Administration
• Graphic design
• Logistics
• Social media management
• Tour management
• Business Development
• Sales
• Client Relationship Management
• International Relations
• Travel arrangements, visa requirements

You don’t have to be an expert in any of these areas, just have an interest and willingness to get involved. No one will be refused and time commitment is up to you. Indicate your interest by emailing contact@fycb.com.au with your area of interest and any specific skills you think may be relevant.

The Silent ANZAC production a huge success at Box Hill Town Hall

For the third time, The Silent ANZAC production was performed by Footscray-Yarraville City Band at the Box Hill Town Hall on Saturday 28th April. A near capacity audience experienced the untold stories of war told through music and poetry. The concert was hailed a great success, with the evening concluding with a rapturous standing ovation.

A special thanks to our guest artists William McInnes, Margaret Haggart, Danielle Matthews and Joe Stanley as well as our Musical Director Phillipa Edwards. Also a special mention to our Principal Cornet Jamie Lawson whose superb solo playing put the icing on the cake. Special guests in attendance at the show were Cr Andrew Davenport (Mayor of Whitehorse), Cr Prue Cutts, Lyn Thurnham of the Catfish Foundation, Simon Abney-Hastings (Earl of Loudoun) and Graham Gibson, Secretary Rats of Tobruk Association.

Footscray-Yarraville City Band is working with various organisations to put on the show again in Melbourne before taking it to Europe in early November.

Catfish Foundation Sponsors “The Silent Anzac” Project

We are pleased to announce that the Catfish Foundation has come on board as a sponsor of The Silent Anzac Project. The Catfish Foundation was created to celebrate and support storytelling and creative endeavour. Lyn Thurnham of the Catfish Foundation flew down from Sydney to attend The Silent Anzac show at the Box Hill Town Hall last Saturday night. “I was extremely impressed with the show and I am pleased that we are able to support the project” said Lyn. Colin Harrison, Project Manager, said “We are delighted to welcome the Catfish Foundation on board as a major sponsor and look forward to a long and fruitful relationship”.

The Catfish Foundation joins our other project sponsors, The Pratt Foundation and Geoffrey Haggard (son of Lieutenant Commander Geoffrey Haggard , 2nd in command of the AE2).

If you or an organisation you are a part of are interested in sponsoring this important project, please get in touch with us.

William McInnes to star in local production of The Silent ANZAC

 William McInnes, well known for his film and TV roles in shows such as Blue Heelers, Sea Change and The Time of our Lives, will be starring in a production of “The Silent Anzac” at the Box Hill Town Hall on Saturday 28th April 2018 at 8pm.

Also starring Margaret Haggart (Opera Australia, Scottish Opera) and Danielle Mathews (An Evening with Stephen Sondheim), the show depicts the events of WW1 from the opening of the Gallipoli campaign to the closing months of the war.

“The show explores the full impact of war on both participants at the front as well as the people at home through the eyes of four archetypal characters, “The Soldier”, “The Poet”, “The Mother” and “The Girl” “ said show director Phillipa Edwards. “The show also pays special tribute to soldiers from the City of Whitehorse who did not return”.

Project Manager Colin Harrison said “The Silent Anzac is a unique theatrical experience and provides both an emotional and fitting tribute to the original Anzacs. The show will also provide a display of WW1 memorabilia including a unique bass drum which saw service overseas with the 1st AIF during WW1 and was inscribed by a number of WW1 soldiers.”

Patrons may also obtain advice and assistance from our staff in researching family members who enlisted in WW1 plus dedicate a personal poppy to a family member, soldier or unit which will be laid at the Australian National Memorial near Villers Bretonneux, France, in November this year in a commemoration ceremony that will be recorded and live streamed for audiences at home.

Click here for details about the concert and to book or ring Colin Harrison on 0437 764 532.

Discovery of WW1 Bass Drum

Picture1qWhilst doing a clean out of the bands’ storeroom in 2013, one of our members saw through all the clutter an old, battered bass drum with a torn head. Only when inspecting more closely did we realise the significance of this drum. On the inside of the drum, we discovered faint markings of soldiers who had served overseas with the 1st AIF during World War 1. Colin Harrison, one of FYCB’s tuba players, began an extensive research project to learn the stories of these men and their families.

Soldiers who wrote their names on the inside of the drum include:

  •   No 2133 Alexander McArthur Lambert, Killed in Action on 30th August 1917 (born Wallsend, enlisted Newcastle)
  •   No 3833 Ossory Arthur Charles Fitzpatrick (born North Sydney, enlisted Dubbo)
  •   No 2123 Edward Rees Harry (born near Broken Hill, enlisted Adelaide)
  •   No 3715 Robert Lynch (born Glasgow, Scotland, enlisted Brisbane)
  •   No 3307 Edward McCarter Brown (born Hamilton, Scotland, enlisted Sydney)

The men who wrote their names in the drum were all members of pioneer battalions which were generally employed on work such as road building, trenching and gun emplacements. The mens’ inscriptions in the drum also give several place names, Fovant and Sutton Veny. These inscriptions indicate the drum was used in bands in the training camps near Salisbury Plain, England, where men were trained before being sent to the front in France and Belgium.

Service records show that Alexander Lambert was at these training camps between August and November 1916 when he would have written the inscription below.

Picture144Lambert was born in born Wallsend and enlisted in Newcastle in the 1st Pioneer Battalion and embarked for England on 3rd May 1916. After a period of training in Sutton Veny, England, Lambert joined his unit “in the field” on 17 November 1916. He was killed in action on 30 November 1917 near Ypres, age 25. An eye witness recorded:

“…[Lambert], with others, was building eighteen pounder dugouts when the Germans started shelling; he was running for shelter in another dugout when a shell landed close beside him and wounded him so severely that he died in 10 minutes.” Lambert is buried in the Reninghelst New Military Cemetery in West Vlaanderen, Belgium.

The history of our country is embedded within the story of these men and our band’s heritage, which stretches back over a hundred years. We feel a special connection to all service men and women and we are proud to honour the sacrifice made.

In the lead up to ANZAC day the band is preparing to commemorate the Australian service men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country. The band will be playing at commemoration services at both the Footscray and Yarraville RSLs as well as participating in the march to the Shrine of Remembrance on ANZAC day.

As part of the commemorations the band will be marching with the WW1 bass drum. The theme for the bass drum insert design (covering the skin) this year marks the centenary of Australians lost in France in 1916 in battles at Fromelles, Pozieres, Mouquet Farm and Flers.

Picture155As part of the band’s ANZAC Centenary Commemorations Project the band is committed to the preservation and public display of this drum and the research of the history of these men.

The drum will be on public display later this year at the band’s Silent ANZAC concert on 12th November at Williamstown Town Hall. For further information contact the band at anzaccentenary@fycb.com.au

FYCB Celebrates a Great Result at Nationals

The Footscray-Yarraville City Band achieved an outstanding result at the Australian National Band Championships held over Easter this year in Gawler, South Australia. Competing against eight other bands in A Grade, Footscray-Yarraville took out third place overall against some very strong competition. The contest adjudicator made a special mention to our Musical Director, Phillipa Edwards, for the outstanding level of musical expression she was able to draw from the band.

Picture1

“This achievement was the result of a lot of hard work and commitment by the band members in the lead up to the Championships” said Phillipa.  “It cements Footscray’s position as one of the finest brass bands in Australia. We are looking forward to bringing this high level of musicianship to all our audiences at our public performances”.

  Picture12The band prepared for the competition over a 10 week period with up to three rehearsals per week including a rehearsal weekend away in Wonthaggi. The test piece, Albion by Jan van der Roost, proved a massive challenge for all involved. This year we were particularly fortunate to have our own choice piece, The Maid of Orleans, written especially for the band by Todd Smith, a young and outstanding composer who is is garnering much critical acclaim both here and overseas.  The performance of “The Maid of Orleans”, the world premiere of the piece, on the Sunday of the competition was the band’s highlight for the weekend. We have already received enquiries from other bands looking to acquire The Maid of OrleansOther highlights included the hymn Peace by Kenneth Downie which rated special mention by the adjudicator, and another successful “left of field” street march paying tribute to the late David Bowie with a special rendition of Let’s Dance!

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A big congratulations is owed to all bands, players, organisers and volunteers that made this Easter weekend another fantastic contest. On to Launceston in 2017! Go Scraggers!