Schoolchildren from three Knutsford Primary Schools staged their own original mini-opera, ‘Texts from the Front’ as part of the Knutsford Promenades, on Saturday 4 July.
Children from Bexton, Egerton and Manor Park Primary Schools explored significant historical events through stories and interviews from ex-servicemen. Using these as inspiration they composed lyrics and music to accompany their own narrative with the support of Manchester Camerata composer, Richard Taylor, dramatist Paul Hine and musicians Dave Tollington, Daniel Storer, Marianne Rawles and Helen Quayle.
The first performance of ‘Texts from the Front’ took place at 3.30pm on 4 July at St John’s Baptist Church and was the first event of the Knutsford Promenades. Now in its third year, the Knutsford Promenades 2015 took the theme ‘Texts from the Front’ to present a stunning arts and heritage based street festival which was free to all to attend.
The Promenades were led by The Universal Soldier, a giant puppet created by renowned Chester-based artist and puppeteer Russell Kirk, who journeyed through time and place in his role as master of ceremonies moving along Princess Street during the afternoon and into Canute Place for the evening finale. Special guests who joined the festivities included David Briggs, Lord-Lieutenant of Cheshire, Christian Wewer, Consul for Denmark, Colonel Joe Halisky, US Embassy Army Attaché and Andy Reid, charity ambassador of ABF The Soldier’s Charity.
Co-organiser Sarah Flannery said, "We are grateful to Arts Council England, Cheshire East Council, Knutsford Town Council, Knutsford Reflects and Peaks and Plains Housing, and our generous sponsors, local businesses, organisations and key supporters - it is thanks to them that we've been able to create this significant arts and heritage-based street festival as a destination event that’s free to all," said Sarah.