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Avie Records and Portsmouth Grammar School are proud to release a brand new recording of new works to mark Remembrance Day featuring the Portsmouth Grammar School Chamber Choir under Music Director, Andrew Cleary. Commissioned by Portsmouth Grammar School, the CD features new works for choir and orchestra composed by Cecilia McDowall (“Ave Maris Stella”), Lynne Plowman (world premiere recording of “Cries Like Silence”), Tarik O’Regan (world premiere recording of “And There Was a Great Calm”) and Sally Beamish (world premiere recording of “The Lion And The Deer”).
The title, “a song more silent” is taken from the e.e.cummings poem “these children singing in stone” as used in “Cries Like Silence” composed by Lynne Plowman
Portsmouth Grammar School is uniquely placed to make this recording. The school is located in 19th-century barracks at the heart of a Garrison City, once the location of Richard the Lionheart’s palace. Soldiers have been sent around the world from this site for centuries. It has been suggested that more pupils lost their lives in the two World Wars than at any other school of comparable size.
In 2008 Portsmouth Grammar School commissioned Sir Peter Maxwell Davies to write a choral setting of Andrew Motion’s poem about the longest-surviving soldier from the First World War, Mr Harry Patch (who died in 2009 at the age of 111). The Five Acts of Harry Patch was premiered on Sunday 9th November 2008 at Portsmouth Cathedral.