Autumn Concert 2015

Last month Birmingham Clarion Singers hosted a successful evening to support Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid. A full programme of songs from the choir (see below), supported by two very special performances by Maria Caravanas and Gary O’Dea.

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Speaker from Birmingham Women’s Aid

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Donations can continue to be made to Women’s Aid here.

Maria Caravanas

Maria Caravanas

Gary O'Dea

Gary O’Dea

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An appreciative audience

Time for cakes...

Time for cakes…

...and refreshments

…and refreshments

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Programme notes

Bring out the Banners – A union song written by Australian John Warner, rearranged by Jane Scott to the traditional folk song “Sovay”.

Joe Hill – symbol for labour movements from around the world. Written by Alfred Hayes and Earl Robinson in the 1930s.

The Sun (Greek Freedom Song) – Mikis Theodarakis has consistently opposed oppressive regimes and was a key voice against the Greek junta 1967-1974, which imprisoned him.

This Path – music by Clarion member Ben Aitken, words by Rebecca Matlou.

Sing John Ball – written by Sydney Carter to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Peasants’ Revolt, also called Wat Tyler’s Rebellion or the Great Rising.

A Man’s a Man for A’ That
– 1795, Robert Burns. An expression of egalitarian ideas of society. In memory of Mo Powell).

Scarecrow – written by John Tams, choir arrangement by Sue Gilmurray.

Hiroshima – written by Ishiji Asada and Koki Kinoshita.

H-Bombs Thunder
– written by John Brunner in 1958 for the Aldermaston March, and unofficial anthem for the anti-nuclear movement.

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Gary O’Dea presenting Jane and Annie with a portrait of Paul Robeson (by the very talented Peter Alexander Shields).

How the Tories won

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‘by Robert Griffiths

The biggest factors in the Tory victory were political and ideological. Labour’s response to the Tory ideological offensive has been feeble, confused and contradictory and its refusal to campaign for public ownership of gas, electricity, water and the railways cost it potentially wide support beyond the party’s core base.

Why did the Tories win the general election, when their policies serve the interests of a wealthy and powerful minority rather than the mass of the people? First, it has to be remembered that Cameron & Co won only 37 per cent of the poll, 25 per cent of the electorate and little more than one in five of adults eligible to register and vote.

These figures should be of little comfort to Labour, whose percentages in each case are even lower.

Nonetheless, it is significant that the groups least likely to register to vote — tenants, especially…

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Still going strong!!

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Welcome to the fresh-out-of-the-bag blog for Birmingham Clarion Singers. After a couple of websites falling by the wayside, and a successful facebook page, we are out to expand our horizons again. This will be the place to come to find out more about Birmingham Clarion’s history, and its ever-increasing circle of friends and supporters.

It is also an apt time to start blogging, with a new rehearsal space and new president to raise our spirits (and our banner). Welcome to Tayo Aluko as our new president!