‘Sailing For Gold’ – A Shanty For Portland
Saturday 8th September
10.30am ‘Songlines’ – meet Drill Hall Gallery
2hr moring wildlife walk with shanties along the way
1.00pm – Drill Hall Gallery – Bring & Share Meal
with performance of New Shanty For Portland
|Programme for the day
Songlines: Walk on the wild side:
10.30am meet at The Drill Hall Gallery.
Stimulate your appetite and knowledge of the island with a morning walk led
by wildlife enthusiasts Lyn and Tom from Wild about Weymouth and Portland. The walk will be circular, returning to the Drill Hall for lunch via the coastal path and Tout Quarry. You may hear a shanty along the way!
Sounding the Stone:
1pm onwards at The Drill Hall Gallery.
The beautiful tones of stone ringing will be heard in the Drill Hall Gallery where the Lithophone created by Portland Sculpture and Quarry Trust, takes centre stage. Please join us in their new gallery for a ‘bring and share’ lunch – a celebration of local food and song.
Open Mic – Local musicians and singers are being invited to perform their own music as well as the shanty – so we’re hoping to hear voices of all ages including the well established Island Voices Choir.
|The new shanty song ‘SAILING FOR GOLD’ is inspired by stories and conversations with Portlanders and those who have made the island their home.Working with local musicians and singers to record the tune and perform the song the community will be ‘singing the world up from the ground’ during the Paralympics in the nooks and crannies of Portland between the 4th – 8th of September.
|Catch them on a bus, hear the shanty in a taxi or on the radio – look out and listen up.
The lyrics are entirely formed from the words people have used, their stories and their insights.
|Thelma’s story:‘……When we lived down Chiswell we always got flooded
There’s bin thirty cars pil-ed high in the street
I can na believe that I’ve seen such a surge-O
Our children they say, are born with webbed feet’.
|Thelma and Roxy at the Drill Hall Gallery song rehearsal session in June 2012 – their story:‘……Ma cut the sheets to make new pillow cases
The stuffing and cloth from the tip it did come
From yanks army blankets she sew’d winter coats
And the faster she treadled, the faster she sung’.
|Children from Underhill Primary School, Portland, practice their version of ‘SAILING FOR GOLD’ led by Nikki Fryer.
The final verse of the shanty comes from a chat with Portland based Paralympic sailing contender, Megan Pascoe:
‘……The island’s got temper its all in the weather
Twenty knot winds and waves fifteen foot high,
A woman onboard is unlucky, I’m told
But we’ve sailed all our lives and we’re Sailing for Gold’
|You can find out more about these adventures and the people they’ve met on the website, where the song will be available as a free download.Download song here
|Falmouth based artists A & B (Annie Lovejoy & Belle Benfield) are working together for the b-side festival 2012 and being supported by Portland Sculpture & Quarry Trust in their community research and planning for a perfomance event at the Drill Hall Gallery, Portland, on 8th September.Inspired by the invitation to ‘explore the flipside of the seaside’ during the Paralympics, they have penned a shanty (chanty), usually a man’s working song… but what of women’s work they ask?
You may well have bumped into Annie & Belle ‘loitering with intent’ in Portland seeking unexpected encounters, conversations and stories about women, the sea – la mer – the rolling waves, the en-chanted deep and the ‘mirror glassy’.