Community First News & Updates

Youth Action Wiltshire Celebrates 70 years with Beethoven’s 9th Symphony

by | Oct 31, 2018 | Events, News, Youth Action Wiltshire

After months of anticipation, a spectacular Beethoven concert has taken place at Marlborough College Chapel to celebrate 70 fantastic years of Youth Action Wiltshire.

On October 19th, a large choir and a host of international soloists took to the stage to perform Beethoven’s 9th symphony and other musical pieces that wowed hundreds of guests.

This landmark fundraising event was a birthday celebration and to highlight the fantastic work Youth Action Wiltshire do to support Wiltshire’s young people.

On the night, local people travelled far and wide to witness first-hand the anticipated symphony that was brought to life by an original script from Benedict Hoffnung.

“It is extraordinary and wonderful that Youth Action Wiltshire has turned 70 this year” said Benedict.

“To mark this achievement, we performed Beethoven’s ninth and final ‘Choral’ symphony, a fitting acknowledgment to a charity that for 7 decades has provided reassurance, help and active support to young people in the region.”


“Beethoven’s music spoke for itself, but we hope the guests learnt something of the man himself – his successes, his frustrations, his dark and desperate moods, but above all his overwhelming and passionate desire to communicate to all through his art.”


“By wonderful coincidence, the London Mozart Players orchestra also turned 70 this year, which means we combined and celebrated a total of one hundred and forty years of fantastic work.

Kicking off the show programme was Beethoven: Overture: The Consecration of the House’ – an intensified march piece with a kaleidoscope of instruments from brass, wind instruments, trumpet fanfares, bassoons, with a later introduction of violins. One section crescendos rapidly, and – following the recapitulation – a forceful coda brings the overture to a brilliant close.

Next on the agenda was climax of Beethoven: Symphony number 9 in D Minor – ‘Beyond the Firmament’ executed brilliantly by Benedict Hoffnung, read by Christopher Rose. To this day, this iconic Beethoven piece still remains as one of the most performed symphonies in the world.

With relief from a short interval and another musical piece welcoming the second half, the night was brought to its final conclusion with ‘Finale Schiller’s Ode to Joy’ – translated from original German.

The evening went above and beyond everyone’s expectations, with huge praise going to Clare Tunney – Soprano, Catherine Wyn-Rogers – Mezzo Soprano, Emmanuel Heitz – Tenor, Darwin Leonard Prakash – Baritone, Christopher Rose – Narrator, Benedict Hoffnung-  Conductor,  the London Mozart Players and City of Bristol Choir.

Without these fantastic musicians and performers, and with support of generous guests, sponsors and the fabulous Youth Action Wiltshire young people and committee in attendance – the evening would not have been possible. Here, we toast a welcome to another 70 years of fantastic achievements.


Youth Action Wiltshire Background information:

Youth Action Wiltshire is the national award winning ‘Youth Arm’ of Community First registered charity 288117.

Our valuable and life-enhancing work includes:

Young Carers Support –  Established as one of the first young carers support projects in the country. We enable young carers aged 5-18 years to be safe in their caring roles and equip them for the future through 1:1 support, mentoring, advocacy, respite activities and breaks.

Splash – Positive activities are provided during school holidays for young people ‘facing challenges in their lives.’ Our Splash programme aims to increase young people’s confidence and self-esteem, social and practical skills.

Employability Programmes – We support young people who are NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) or at risk of becoming NEET, by providing skill development and confidence building activities, training courses and 1:1 support we enable them to progress in life and their careers can take shape.

Youth Volunteering – Our National Citizenship Service, Ambassador and Young Leader Programmes provide young people with the confidence and skills to become effective, valuable volunteers benefiting their local communities.

Youth Club Support – We Support the development of new youth clubs and work with youth and young leaders to ensure Wiltshire’s voluntary youth clubs are safe, interesting places to be.


How can you help?

All funds raised through donations and sponsorship go towards supporting the vital services Youth Action Wiltshire provide across the county for the young people of Swindon and Wiltshire. You can also help by attending one of our upcoming fundraising events:

  • The ‘Mary Howard Christmas Fair 2018’ between the 13th – 16th November at Cotswold Airport. All proceeds will be split between local charities, Allegras Ambition and Youth Action Wiltshire. For more information contact
  • Our annual ‘Carols by Candlelight’ that takes place at Malmesbury Abbey on December 14. Book your tickets through
  • Or become a Friend of Youth Action Wltshire, £50 a year will help us provide future mentoring and respite sessions for Wiltshire young carers.

You can find out more about services provided by Youth Action Wiltshire on this website and on our Facebook page @YouthActionWiltshire

To support Youth Action Wiltshire, please contact Dawn or telephone: 01380 732829

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