On Wednesday 17 April, early music professionals from around the UK assembled to give a performance on Waterloo Bridge as part of the occupation by Extinction Rebellion. They performed orchestral suites and sinfonias by J S Bach, under the banner of ‘Bach for the Future’. Despite some apprehension about what this musical performance would bring to the action, it was a huge success, drawing a big and appreciative crowd of protestors (and some police!). It created a lot of energy and enthusiasm for providing early music at other non-violent direct actions, and later in the week a chamber group assembled to play at the Marble Arch camp, just after Massive attack had left the main stage! A quartet also played at the closing ceremony of the International Rebellion, making it on to the BBC news website: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-48058177
Those who took part really felt that classical music had been proven to have a powerful role to play in peaceful protest, and this network has been set up in part to provide a pool of players who would be interested in playing at similar non-violent direct actions in the future.
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