FYCB Europe – Day 1 – Versailles, France

My roommate is still sleeping so I’m sitting on the window sill watching the sunrise, writing a one fingered update on my phone.

The flight was ok, first one 8 hours – no sleep, 3 movies. Then a 15 hour flight. Maybe 4 hours of dozing. Binge watch of 6 episodes of ‪picnic at hanging rock‬. At Paris airport for 3 hours going through customs, sorting out lost bags and finding people who were meeting us there. (Only lost one bag (not mine) should turn up today).

But then! We took the coach to Versaille. So beautiful! Wandered around the grounds for 3 hours with such beautiful weather. We walked through manicured gardens, paths, through the forest and endlessly found new twists and turns. Took lots of silly photos on a few different cameras.

Lovely day, great lunch. Back to Paris, went for a wander, had omelette and wine.

Bed at 7, just had 11 hours sleep.

Great day.

– Emily Furlong (solo trombone)

The Fabulous Friends of FYCB

Where would we be without our helpers and supporters? Well, we would not be able to do half of what we have achieved during this Armistice Centenary year. Footscray-Yarraville City Band would like to thank all our helpers and supporters who do fundraising, promotion and community engagement, selling tickets and memorabilia, Front of House, Back Stage and technical support as well as providing sound advice to enable the band to achieve it’s goals. We’re incredibly grateful to have such a talented and willing crew supporting the band in it’s endeavours. Each and every helper is as much a part of the band as the those who sit in rehearsals and make the music.

Of special mention is Lorraine Wright and John Hoppe who have both thrown themselves into The Silent Anzac Project with an astonishing amount of dedication and perseverance. Lorraine and John have been working hard all year to promote our shows, develop contacts with potential project partners, fundraising, coordination of commemorations, poppies and wreaths, copious amounts of letter writing, research and just plain hard slog. Thank you, John and Lorraine.

100 Years Ago – The Final Months

The saddest times of the war were when families received notification that their loved ones had been killed. Letters were the only form of communication between soldiers and family and often the first inkling of a soldier’s death was when the family didn’t receive replies to the letters sent to him. This could cause months of worry before confirmation one way or another was received.

“It was with a very sad heart I read Ivy’s intimation of poor Leslie’s death. I had greatly feared something of the kind for about two months before. I had written several letters and had no reply and that was so unusual for him, but they were not returned and I still had a hope that whatever was wrong it would not turn out so serious as it has done.”

(Extract of letter to Elizabeth Scouller from her cousin)

Sometimes the first intimation of a soldier’s death was a returned letter marked “Deceased” and “K”.

The Silent Anzac a success at Whitehorse Centre

The recent performance of The Silent Anzac at the Whitehorse Centre, Nunawading, was a great success. There were not many dry eyes in the audience at the end of the performance. We were graced with the presence of Whitehorse Councillor Prue Cutts, Captain Ken Greig OAM RAN Ret, Colin & Val Hamley, President, 2/2nd Pioneer Battalion Association, Pitsa Binnion – Principal of McKinnon Secondary College and students Andrew and Mitchell from the Box Hill North Primary School.

The performance of the show was our third this year and it was very pleasing to see the level of interest in the show especially from our younger folk. The poppies laid during the show by Box Hill North Primary School students Andrew and Mitchel were handcrafted by students at the school and will be laid by the band at the Australian National Memorial in France in November this year.

There was also a lot of interest from our patrons with the WW1 memorabilia and poppies display in the Waratah Room with Captain Greig, Secretary of the AE2 Commemorative Foundation, remarking that he was impressed with the display and information on the AE2 that was put together by our John Hoppe. Captain Grieg was also involved in the search and discovery of the AE1 near the Duke of York Islands in December 2017. The AE1 was lost with all hands in September 1914. In June 2014, Captain Greig was a member of the “Project Silent Anzac” which conducted a final maritime archaeological assessment of AE2. The project aimed to preserve, protect and tell the story of AE2.

FYCB Goes Live

Footscray-Yarraville City Band is very excited to announce that we will be live streaming our concert at the Williamstown Town Hall on the 27th October 2018. This is a free live stream for all to see!

Head  to http://www.fycb.com.au/the-silent-anzac-concert-live-stream/ to view the performance.


The Silent ANZAC Remembrance Day Performance

Footscray-Yarraville City Band is extremely excited to announce we are performing our self produced show commemorating those who served in WWI, The Silent ANZAC, at Exhibition Hall at Australia house in London on the 11th November 2018.

This coincides with the 100th anniversary of Armistice, and will be a truly special occasion not to be missed. More information can be found here, and tickets can be purchased here. Be sure to secure tickets as soon as possible, as a sellout crowd is anticipated.

FYCB to Perform with Durham University Brass Band

We are pleased to announce that we will be performing with the Durham University Brass Band on the 15th November 2018. The Durham University Brass Band is a vibrant society committed to showing the university the meaning of banding! Based in the university’s music department, the band rehearses weekly and puts on regular concerts, perform for a variety of events and also participate in a national brass band competition.

The Silent Anzac Show Line Up Announced

It is with great excitement that Footscray-Yarraville City Band announces the line up for our forthcoming Silent Anzac shows and The Silent Anzac tour. We are pleased to be able to bring such outstanding talent to our productions.

Margaret Haggart, “The Mother”

Margaret studied singing with Antonio Moretti-Pananti. In 1972 her professional career began in the UK, with Welsh National Opera, singing Queen of Night & Gilda (Rigoletto). Principal roles followed with ENO, Scottish Opera North, English Music Theatre, R.Albert Hall Prom Concerts & BBC Radio & TV. She performed with Nancy Opera & the Orange Festival in France, and Santiago Opera in Chile. Home in Melbourne from 1984, she appeared with VSO, all State Companies, Opera Australia, most major Festivals, most Symphony Orchestras, and ABC simulcasts locally, and worked in NZ., Italy, Singapore & USA.

Danielle Matthews, “The Girl”

Danielle is an actor/singer/songwriter who studied Music Theatre at the Victorian College of the Arts and is the inaugural winner of The Rob Guest Endowment Award. She has worked in shows and concerts throughout Australia and across the world including – An Evening with Stephen Sondheim, Respect the Musical (Australia Tour), Big Band Beat (Tokyo Disney), Another Opening Another Show (Manilla St Productions), Ship of Fools (Gary Young), TRIBE (Anthony Crowley) Twisted Broadway, Light the Night, Hats Off, Musical Melodies, Carols by Candlelight, Morning Melodies, Sing for a Cure and The Helpmann awards, just to name a few. Danielle has performed live on Good Morning Australia, Mornings with Kerri Anne, It Takes Two. Danielle has spent the past three years performing with acclaimed opera singer and TV personality Dr Jonathan Welch AM (Choir of Hard Knocks).

Joe Stanley, “The Soldier”

Joe attained a BA/Music at NMIT 2001-2004. He has performed in blues, rock and metal bands around Australia and Europe and has also appeared on TV in Australia, the UK and the US, including Neighbours, Something in the Air, Russell Gilbert Show, Comedy Sketch series, The Line. During 2008 Joe lived and worked in the UK and France, and returned to Australia in time for summer with a new love of singing. He is currently working on several music projects, vocalist for two heavy rock/metal bands , Pegazus and British Steel and guitarist/vocalist for heavy metal band Turret.

Phillipa Edwards, Musical Director

Phillipa studied trumpet at the Victorian College of the Arts and has studied under brass luminaries, Gordon Webb, Mark Summerbell and Rob Smithies. She studied conducting with Professor David King and Steve Bastable (UK) as well as Dr Barry Bignell and Brett Kelly (MSO). Her experience as a conductor is both extensive and varied and she has worked all over Australia with Concert, Stage and Brass bands, Symphony Orchestras, Choirs and small ensembles. Phillipa is a regular conductor with Melbourne Youth Music and has also worked with Dr Johnathon Welch OAM and his Choir of Hard Knocks Foundation. Phillipa was awarded the 2007 “Musical Director of the Year” by the Victorian Band’s League.

Jamie Lawson, Principal Cornet

Jamie has been a member of the Footscray-Yarraville City Band for over 20 years holding the band’s principal chair for 19 years. In that time he has held a position in the Royal Australian Navy band and worked extensively as a freelance musician appearing on stage and in commercial recordings playing trumpet, flugelhorn and cornet. His busy performance schedule sees him regularly travel to perform as a guest artist both throughout Australia and New Zealand, is the events coordinator and performer with National Australia Brass and is a keen educator and conductor. Jamie is four times Victorian cornet champion and, in 2011, was invited to perform at the ‘Ern Kellar’ International Soloist of the Year in Sydney.

Jamie currently teaches trumpet, horn and ensembles at St Kevin’s College and holds a Bachelor of Performance (Salford University UK and Melbourne University), a graduate diploma of Secondary Teaching (University of New England) and is a ‘Geneva Instruments’ performance artist.

Box Hill North Primary School to Launch Silent Anzac Project

Silent Anzac project partners Box Hill North Primary School will be launching their own Silent Anzac project to commemorate our service men and women and to mark 100 years since the end of WW1. Students are invited to make a poppy and dedicate it to a WW1 service man or woman. These poppies will be laid at the Australian National Memorial, Villers Bretonneux, France, by the band in November 2018 as part of the official Armistice Centenary events. This ceremony will be live streamed and recorded for viewing by the school students. The students are also invited to research their chosen service man or women utilising online resources to search for WW1 soldiers who lived in their street and to review their service records. Students may also wish to dedicate their poppy to a great grandparent or great great uncle who served in WW1.

The students will have an opportunity to display their poppies and other WW1 related project work to the general public at the band’s performance of The Silent Anzac show at the Whitehorse Centre, Nunawading, on 30th September. The poppies and wreaths will be officially handed over to the band at a Remembrance service at school assembly on 26th October.

This project provides the opportunity for the students to have a personal involvement in the commemoration of our service men and women andto mark the centenary of Armistice of WW1. If your school would like to be involved in the Silent Anzac project then please contact Colin Harrison of the Footscray-Yarraville City Band at secretary@fycb.com.au.

Online resources

The AIF Project (search for WW1 soldiers by address): https://aif.adfa.edu.au/aif/

National Archives of Australia (search for service records of WW1 soldiers):


FYCB launches GoFundMe campaign for European Tour


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.