We present, in the ABINGDON ARTS FESTIVAL:
CELEBRATING BRITTEN AND AUDEN
– A POT POURRI OF FILMS, MUSIC AND POEMS
Venue: St Nicolas’ Church, Market Place, Abingdon at 7.30 pm.
Night Mail (Cert U)
Dirs: Harry Watt and Basil Wright 23 mins UK 1936
The Way To The Sea (Cert E)
Dir: J B Holmes 22 mins UK 1936
Both films have music by Britten and poetry by Auden.
Benjamin Britten: Cabaret Songs and On This Island (selection).
Samuel Barber: The Monk And His Cat and The Praises Of God (songs by Irish monks translated W. H. Auden).
Sung by Ciara O’Connor, accompanied on piano by Wendy Hiscocks.
Poetry: Judy Gray and Bill Branson read a selection of Auden’s poems.
Tickets: £10.50 (concessions £8.50) from Frugal Food, 17 West St Helen St or 01235 522163
THE WAY TO THE SEA
“Fascinating social documentary and very informative. In some respects, still relevant to-day. Thank goodness the style of commentary is now a lot more relaxed and easy on the ear!”
“Some good individual photography. Shame about the storyboard – or lack of it!”
“Very informative and fascinating. I bet more mail arrived at its destination then than now!”
“Good, well-organised documentary, somewhat spoiled by W H Auden’s inadequate verse (Harry Watt was right about that!)”
“The Way to the Sea only served to show up the superb dramatic quality of Night Mail. The latter was almost perfect, although the voice-over was not always audible …”
“Both (films) were interesting (but) had difficulty in hearing the soundtrack. The quality of the sound was an issue. Am pleased to have seen these (films).”
“What a pleasure to hear such beautiful singing and to listen to wonderful poetry so beautifully read. The film Night Mail was a real nostalgia trip. An excellent combination.”
“Splendid. A wonderful mixture of film, music and poetry.”
“A talented young lady who should go far – I shall watch out for her recitals.”
“An entertaining evening, thank you. Ciara O’Connor has talent.”
“I enjoyed the films – Night Mail was very good. I felt the (poetry) readers needed a brief introduction and I very much wanted to applaud but nobody (else) did. Wonderful music!”
“Well chosen – fine performances – excellent evening”
“A fascinating combination – I’ll have to read more Auden! Films (were) so nostalgic …”
“The sound quality was disappointing.”