An orchestral screening of The Battle of the Somme is to be held for all interested members of the community.
The Imperial War Museum’s 1916 film is one of the most successful British films ever made and shows real troops smiling awkwardly at the newfangled cameras as they move towards the front in the Great War.
Their actions are far removed from the swagger and march of war films, but then this was real. The film was distributed word wide to demonstrate to allies and neutrals, Britian’s commitment to the First World War, and it is estimated that over half the population of the UK watched it - a figure not matched until the release of Star Wars in 1977.
The film is being shown at Berkhamsted School at 7.15pm on Friday July 1st as part of the school’s 475th anniversary celebrations. The anniversary of the start of the Battle on July 1st also gives the school the opportunity to reflect on the loss of four Old Berkhamstedians on that day, with a further 40 thought to have died during the conflict that lasted nearly five months at the cost of over one million men wounded or killed.
The central part of the evening will involve the Berkhamsted School Orchestra, as part of 100 live orchestral screenings of the film across the country, performing a modern score specially composed to accompany the re mastered film.
The evening will begin at 6pm with a brief documentary about Berkhamsted School and the Battle of the Somme, followed by a talk on the film by David Walsh from the Imperial War Museum. An interval for refreshments at 6.45pm will precede the screening at 7.15pm. The film is 74 minutes in duration and should finish by 8.30pm. Tickets and refreshments are complimentary, but tickets must be booked online at www.berkhamstedbookings.co.uk/events.