Clare Howard



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No Rhyme...No Reason
The Poetry of War


2:30pm Thursday 27th August July 2009

St. Mary's Hall, Arundel (location)

Part of the Arundel Festival




Donations were made to the charities Help for Heroes and War Child from the net proceeds of the event.


Help for Heroes - www.helpforheroes.org.uk/

War Child - www.warchild.org






Baby Boomers Hit Back
by Julian Sluggett

No Rhyme..No Reason? presented by the accomplished Voices In Performance group, directed by Julia Goodman, created a kaleidoscope of emotions - reason, justification, passion, horror and humour around the futility, necessity and greed of war. Reflections particularly appropriate during the 70th anniversary of the start of WW2.

The moving performance was framed by protagonist and antagonist, Christine West and Rod Beacham, who skillfully led us through a wealth of beautiful material drawn from First World War poets as well as Aristophanes, Shakespeare and Tennyson, through to Vera Brittain and the thought provoking words of Pastor Niemoller, and those of contemporary soldier poets.

Led by Julia, the Voices: Patrick Hastings, Clare Howard, Mark Mason Jones and Nigel Purchase, were hauntingly commanding. Together they bounced our emotions around the Hall, creating feelings of guilt, frustration, anger, sorrow and laughter, mirroring the gamut of feelings experienced in times of conflict. This performance included a remarkable poem written and presented by 12 year old Toby Winter, the youngest ever contributor to Voices.

A delightful 60's Ban The Bomb hippies' protest opened Act 2, reminding us "Baby Boomers" that we have never been involved in a world wide conflict, although it was a close run gamble - the Cuban Missile Crisis nearly tipped the balance before common sense prevailed.

Music and sound effects were provided by the accomplished Roger Limb. John Bailey and Veronica Doubleday's Afghan songs and music uniquely shaped the performance, harrowingly reminding us of the sacrifices made by civilians, as well as service personnel, in our current conflicts.

Well worth catching up with this company - see their website for news of future performances.

Julian Sluggett
1st September, 2009



See also the reviews of the earlier Chichester Festivities Production  at the Ox Market on 12th July,2009