Memorial Ground: SCO mark centenary of the Battle of the Somme

"... then the order came down, dump everything and fix bayonets, you have got to fight for it lads." 
[Private Walter Hutchinson, recounting the Battle of the Somme]

1 July 2016 marks the centenary of the first day of The Battle of The Somme – 21 weeks of fighting during which around 1.1 million people were killed or injured; approximately the entire combined population of Glasgow and Edinburgh, wounded or dead.

To mark the centenary, the SCO Chorus are taking part in a powerful new choral work that brings together professional singers, community choirs and a local Fife orchestra. The lyrics for this work have been provided by the public, and Pulitzer prize-winning American composer David Lang has incorporated these into his Memorial Ground.

The SCO Chorus recorded the hymn-like tune that is the ‘ground’ to the performance which you can hear here.


There’s a website dedicated to the project that is well worth exploring –

There’s also an interview with Festival Director Svend Brown from June 9th 2016 which gives an update on the project. Anniversary of bloody offensive marked in music

The world premiere performance of Memorial Ground is on 2 July is at Cambo Potato barn – an atmospheric and acoustically alive venue. Ticket details are at