This year marks the ANZAC Centenary and the band is honoured to be participating in events that coincide with this occasion.
Sunday 19 April saw A Patriotic Event fill the Brisbane City Hall with an afternoon of magnificent entertainment, reprising the songs and music that was performed at the many cultural carnivals and fundrasing events held to support the World War 1 effort. The band played alongside the Brisbane Excelsior Band, the Brisbane Celtic Fiddle Club Ensemble, local choirs and soloists John Thompson, Nicole Murray, Elspeth Sutherland, violinist Emma Nixon and along with the glorious music of the Father Henry Willis Pipe Organ played by Philip Gearing. John Thompson brought together these musicians to engender the fighting spirit, intense patriotism and community pride of the time; as a band we greatly enjoyed our contribution and thank John for our opportunitiy to be involved.
The week leading up to ANZAC Day always includes the Emmanuel College ANZAC Formal Dinner where a solo piper performed for the College community. This event is integral to Emmanuel College, as the founding Chairman, Reverend Dr Ernest Northcroft Merrington, was a chaplain to the ANZACs in Gallipoli and Chaplain-General to the Australian Imperial Forces on the Western Front in WWI.
On ANZAC Day itself, a solo piper will be representing the band at the Toowong RSL Sub Branch Dawn Service along with the Queensland University Regiment and for the ANZAC Day Service at the St Andrew’s Uniting Church in Brisbane. The full band will then gather for the Brisbane ANZAC Day March through the CBD.
In the afternoon the band will be involved with the St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital ANZAC Day Service and the hospital invites the local community to join them. It is always an honour to be a part of this ceremony, as the hospital acts as a living memorial to those who fought in the two world wars. The band and hospital share a wonderful relationship and we are looking forward to contributing to their ANZAC Service again this year.
Last month the band also paid tribute to all those in the Australian Defence Force who served in Afghanistan by marching in the Operation Slipper Welcome Home Parade. As the second pipe band and only civilian band who participated, it was an unique opportunity for the community to thank and respect our service men and women.