BBC Radio 3 Live in Concert at Shaw's Corner
We are very proud here at Shaw's Corner to be taking part in a series of Radio 3 concerts commemorating the start of the First World War.
Our concert will be held in the Palladian Church of Ayot St Lawrence, on Sunday 6 July at 7.30pm. Shaw wrote strongly against the war, highlighting the waste of life and irreversible damage to all concerned. It is a great privilege to be working with Radio 3 and to be hearing music that Shaw loved in the beautiful place that he knew so well.
Radio 3 continues its relationship with the National Trust for three events at properties with FIRST WORLD WAR connections. Sean Rafferty presents In Tune live from Dunham Massey, used as a military hospital during THE WAR (26 June), Ian Macmillan hosts The Verb at Batemans, the former home of Rudyard Kipling, who lost his son in the war, and Live In Concert presents a recital of songs and violin music (6 July) from St Lawrence's Church, Shaw's Corner, the former home of George Bernard Shaw, who supported conscientious objectors during the war.
To mark the centenary of the outbreak of WWI, this recital combines music by composers who spanned the generations in 1914: those who went off to fight and those too old to see active service. BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists Elena Urioste (violin) and Zhang Zuo (piano) perform Elgar's Violin Sonata, written in 1918 in the dying days of the war, a work full of introspection and melancholy. This is complemented by songs by Ivor Gurney and others who experienced at first hand the horrors of the fighting, sung by the young British tenor Benjamin Hulett, accompanied by Christopher Glynn.
Elgar and George Bernard Shaw became friends just after the war ended, and to perform these works in the vicinity of Shaw's house, in the church where he regularly played the organ, is a fitting reminder that attitudes to the war while it was still raging were more nuanced than we may realise today.