Talking Music: Ant Metcalfe Discusses Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance at St David’s Hall, Cardiff

NOW in its 39th year, the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance returns to St David’s Hall on Saturday 2 November at 7pm.

In support of the annual Poppy Appeal, this concert is the nation’s chance to come together to commemorate and honour all those who have lost their lives in conflict.

Neil Collins chats to the Royal British Legion’s Area Manager Wales, Ant Metcalfe about this important remembrance event.

The Wales Festival of Remembrance concert makes for a very moving evening. What have you got planned?

This year we are focusing on the 75th anniversary commemorations of D-Day and the liberation of much of Western Europe. We will be honoured to have several Wales based D-Day veterans in our audience. There’s also a choir from the Netherlands performing as a reflection of the strong links between s-Hertogenbosch and Wales after its liberation by the 53rd (Welsh) Division in October 1944. We will have suitable pieces that reflect the time and the scale of the historical importance.

This year is also 140th anniversary of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift, which has also gone down in Welsh folklore and history. The audience can expect a number of references to this conflict within the running order.      

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The evening features an audience sing-along. What pieces will be performed?

We are grateful to the support of The Siren Sisters at the Festival and they will be leading on the audience engagement.

Who is the compere for this year’s concert?

We have Eddie Butler compering the event this year – fresh from his Rugby World Cup exploits in Japan. 

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How important are concerts like these in commemorating the sacrifice that those before us gave to allow us to live happily and peacefully?

They are a hugely important platform for The Legion in Wales to keep remembrance and commemoration in the national eye, but also to highlight the work that The Legion does in supporting the entire Armed Forces Community.  

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