AppealDisappearing Dawn Chorus - A preparation for the 85th anniversary of Wild Birds Protection
There was a time, before people roamed the Earth, before it shook with the thunderous footfalls of the dinosaurs, before the vivid vibration of a dragonfly’s wing troubled the air, that the world was silent. Noiseless, that is, but for the wind and water. These days, the dawn chorus is dwindling, and wild birds are in declining numbers; the planet may perhaps fall silent again.
This was a concern for Eric Parker (1870–1955), pioneer conservationist whose work helped push through the Wild Birds Protection Act that came into force in May 1934, 85 years ago next spring. Parker lived and worked in Surrey, near Godalming. Parker campaigned vigorously for legislation against the indiscriminate gathering of wild birds’ eggs, alongside hunting and other destructive activity. He talks about the period that led to the passing of the Wild Birds act in 1934 as ‘that year of blessed memory’.
Davis Lewiston Sharpe is a composer and has worked with the Royal Philharmonic. David has set verses by Eric Parker which give sad, soulful expression to the plight of song birds – his Song of the Nightingale. The plan is to present the new song cycle, sung by astounding mezzo soprano Phoebe Haines, in a programme with the Royal Philharmonic alongside works by Elgar, Delius, Butterworth and Respighi – all inspired by the natural world. If the concert goes ahead, we can do a little bit more to aid the work of scientific research and practical activity to promote work towards avian conservation. I invite essence readers to get in touch – perhaps you can help us get this concert off the ground.essence infoBirds on the Wire & the Waves
Wild Birds Protection – 85th Anniversary Concert, Sunday, 12 May 2019, Cadogan Hall
Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra
Phoebe Haines (mezzo soprano)
David Lewiston Sharpe (conductor)Programme:
Lewiston Sharpe/Parker The Song of the Nightingale, Butterworth Banks of Green Willow, Elgar 3 Songs, Sea-Pictures, Chanson de matin & de nuit, Delius Summer Night on the River,
On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring, Respighi The BirdsEmail: firstname.lastname@example.orgTelephone:
020 8362 9971