Musica da Camera brought their Anzac Memorial concert to Gunning on Sunday. The eclectic program mixed joy and cheerfulness with the sombreness of war.
The two memorial pieces were Frederick Septimus Kelly’s 'Elegy for String Orchestra - In Memoriam Rupert Brooke' and Shostakovich’s 'Chamber Symphony op 110A'. Both these pieces commemorated war; in the case of the hauntingly beautiful Kelly piece, he wrote it in a tent at Gallipoli after his friend’s death, and in the case of Shostakovich he wrote the basic piece, a quartet, after visiting the devastation of Dresden in 1960. Both were delivered with enormous sympathy and understanding by the orchestra under the enthusiastic but careful direction of Leonard Weiss.
Bracketing the sombre pieces was joy and fun; the wild west from Aaron Copland, Star Wars from John Williams, a pastoral piece for baroque lovers from Vivaldi, October, by Eric Whitacre - composed for autumn in the Northern Hemisphere and therefore suitable for Gunning in May - and finally four orchestrated English folk songs by John Rutter, which as we left had us “dashing away with the smoothing iron”.
The audience departed knowing they had received a rare treat.
Terry-Ann O’Neill, Gunning born and bred, gave a Step-Up address at our 2015 Anzac Ceremony at the Cenotaph, beginning as follows:
“Being small, country villages can have an intimacy that is sometimes lacking in the more widespread cities and towns. We are standing in a spot that was at the very centre of the activities in Gunning during the Great War. Just across the road, at the Courthouse, many of Gunning’s soldiers were farewelled as they set off to camp, usually in Goulburn and then Liverpool. Another spot for farewells was the Oddfellows’ Hall, which was just up the road in Waratah Street. Many of the enlistees had gone to Gunning Public School, just down the road, or the Catholic School, on the hill. The Kangaroo recruiting march participants camped in the Gunning Showground, just a block away.”
Note: In 1917, Warrataw Street was spelt Waratah.
Trevor Lawton’s address will feature in upcoming editions as will more from Terry-Ann’s speech about Arthur Montague Alchin, whose name appears on the Gunning Cenotaph.
Zone 27 Pony Club held their annual Easter Camp at the Gunning Showground during the school holidays and according to reports, the week was terrific. The facilities at Gunning are very well regarded, with local know how and know ‘who’ also appreciated by organisers.
Thanks to Council particularly for mowing the cross country course at short notice.
District local Belinda Cosgrove of Canberra Royals Polocrosse was presented recently with the Jacko Sillis Memorial Award at the Southern Highlands Polocrosse Awards Night.
For those in the Southern Highlands Polocrosse zone, the name Jacko Sillis is revered. The Jacko Sillis Memorial Award for Dedication to Horsemanship is the most prestigious zone award.
Congratulations Belinda, you have done us proud!
What a day – another great festival run by those stalwarts at Collector! Gunning Community Care manned the gates and will receive a much appreciated proportion.
Gunning’s Louise Saint John met Phyllis and Peter (staying with friends in Crookwell) at the Pumpkin Festival, who insisted on giving her $5 when she mentioned her trouble with a malfunctioning ATM.
Louise would love to contact Phyllis and Peter so if you know them please phone Louise on 4845 1665.
Saturday May 16: Shire Wide Bag-a-Bargain Garage Sale, register by calling 4832 1988.
Sunday May 17: Cycling Race Lunch in Hall. Volunteers sought so please call 4845 1809. Proceeds will go towards painting the Shire Hall.