War commemoration in Hampden

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A World War 1 production is being held in Hampden on Friday night to remember all those in North Otago who fought in the war.

Waitaki Boys’ Waitaki Girls’ and Otago Boys’ high schools are all taking part in the production, which includes an exhibition.

Our Great War production and exhibition organiser Alison MacTavish said it would be a fantastic weekend.

“The weekend will be really good and I’m looking forward to the production on Friday night and the exhibition over the weekend. Many people will enjoy it.”

Mrs MacTavish said the acts by the schools were impressive.

“Term 3 is such a busy one, but they’ve all put in extra effort to put on something special in Hampden. Waitaki Boys’ and Girls’ high schools are acting out dramatic interludes from a play by local playwright John Leask, and an Otago Boys’ High School music group is bringing up one of Alexander Aitken’s famous violins to recreate a scene described in his book about playing the violin in a dugout under Chunuk Bair.”

The performance will also include snippets of the memories from an older generation who still remember the men of the Great War.

“We’re handing on what we gleaned about their experiences,” Mrs MacTavish said.

There are tales of valour and heroism, of suffering and danger, of unrelenting hard work and of desperate escape. Some died, some were wounded, and the course of the lives of all, and of all who loved them, were fundamentally altered by those years of war.

Waitaki Boys’ High School pupils Sam Wilson, Damien Kitto and Luke McCabe are looking to taking part in the production and doing their part to help re-live war scenes from the past.

Sam and Luke are acting out scenes while Damien will read a piece about the school.

A WGHS pupil will also re-enact and read a piece from Isabel Clark who was drowned after the sinking of the Marquette.

The exhibition will feature mementos and will be open on Saturday and Sunday from 10am-4pm.

Tickets to the production at the Hampden Presbyterian Church cost $5 per person and $10 per family, while the exhibition is a gold coin entry.

By BRAYDEN LINDSAY

PHOTO: BRAYDEN LINDSAY

GETTING READY: Sam Wilson, 18, Damien Kitto, 17, and Luke McCabe, 17, practice putting puttees over their legs ahead of Friday night’s production.