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Titanic Centenary Events – World Premier Philip Hammond’s Requiem

What a memorable day we had on Sunday, we had an early start to get seats in the Belfast City hall commemoration service.  We had time to reflect and savour the beautiful peace of experiencing and taking in the new garden which was just beside us.  The seagull’s cries were so poignant during the few moments of silence between the verses of that great sea hymn ‘Eternal father strong to save’.  It really filled up the wells of emotion, emphasizing the power of the sea and how we must stand in awe of it. 

Man has lived on travel and especially travel by sea which always will involve risk.  Rev Gilpin’s address was dignified and succinct, he emphasized the permanence of this memorial to the lost souls represented by the granite and the diversity of the families affected by tragedy which was represented but the diverse range of flowers.  This memorial will be here in perpetuity and acts as a reminder of the legacy and lessons learnt from the tragedy of Titanic in terms of safety at sea.  The fresh smells remind us of life continuing as we carry on refreshed and renewed with the memory of the lost souls.  Una Reilly, MBE spoke well on behalf of the Titanic Society reminding us of the great achievement and Brian Kennedy rendition really did ‘raise us up’ especially when he allowed us to sing with him.

Then on to St Peter’s Cathedral for the ‘Requiem to the lost souls of Titanic composed by Philip Hammond.  The music was exquisite, an unlifting tribute to those lost souls.  The calm and silence of the setting was so moving as the Kyrie unfolded and then suddenly the sun came pouring in onto the balcony lighting up the choir boys who were singing with all their might and reverence almost lifting the roof.  The stillness at times was serene.  The Benedictus was the highlight with the endless echoes lifting us up to heaven.

This work is a masterpiece and what a privilege to be at the world premier in such an august setting.

Johnny Andrews



3 Responses for Titanic Centenary Events – World Premier Philip Hammond’s Requiem

  1. Myles Andrews says:

    We were all in town: but only my parents happened upon the commemoration service and unveiling of the memorial and garden outside City Hall by chance that morning and were very moved by the dignity and solemnity of the occasion. So much so, we nearly missed our appointment at the H&W drawing offices as the music was hypnotic.

    All in all we agreed that the events surrounding the Centenary were handled excellently well and were a credit to the people of Belfast and surrounding communities.

    We were very happy to have travelled from Los Angeles to our familial and spiritual home to be a part of such a special and thought-provoking weekend.

  2. fudged says:

    Just been to the new iconic Titanic building,splendid,spectaular ,shop is great and lovely cafe,didn’t have time for the tour.Belfast is really on the map.Just sad to see the drawing office so run down,this really should be a priority and the natural light is superb surely this can be made into something imaginative,ideas welcome.

  3. Johnny says:

    With Titanic now almost forgoten ,I just wished to mention an excellent lectuire I went to in the reform club on all the films made about Titanic from a silent still movie in 1912 to a childrens modern lego version.The most fascinating was the Nazi version commisioned by Goebels as a propaganda film in 1943 ,it was antisemitic pro the oppressed irish and depicted Ismay and JP Morgan as evil Anglo American capitalists.It was a complete disaster as by the time it was released Germany was losing the war on all fronts and it was withdrawn as inappropriate and no loner fitting in with the regime’s spin

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