An innovative singing project revealing the stories of extraordinary Essex women in science will run throughout the summer as part of Essex 2020. Chelmsford City Theatres have teamed up with electric voice theatre and the Essex Music Hub to create ‘Echoes from Essex’, a programme of events which celebrates some of the county’s remarkable women, past and present.
The centrepiece of the project is the Essex Virtual Choir which starts rehearsing this Wednesday (July 29th). Anyone from Essex can take part and singers will learn and perform music inspired by women in science and created by British female composers. During rehearsals, participants will also have a chance to help shape these compositions, culminating in an exciting and unique performance at the end of September.
Choir rehearsals aren’t the only part of the festival starting this week. On Monday 27 July, a weekly show called ‘Soundings from Essex’ begins. Over the course of eight weeks, science historian Patricia Fara will be joined by modern scientists to share music, art and conversation about the unsung science heroes of Essex. The first episode features the dazzling Margaret Cavendish, the 17th century scientist, philosopher and poet, who was born in Colchester in 1623.
The festival also has a series of events for children. Free virtual songwriting workshops developed with the Essex Music Education Hub run daily from August 3rd-7th, giving pupils aged seven to nine across Essex the chance to create and record their own song.
A special series of Minerva Scientifica podcasts is being released alongside the festival. Visit our resource page to find out more about Women of Science and Music: 30 Celebrations and listen to the series so far.
“Essex has so many amazing women past and present and it has been a privilege to discover their stories, which are the very opposite of the tedious stereotypes about Essex girls. Join us at a rehearsal, workshop or show this summer to find out more. All of our events are free, and you’ll have a chance to collaborate with some fantastic contemporary scientists, artists and musicians.”Frances M Lynch, Artistic Director – electric voice theatre
The festival has been created by the award-winning electric voice theatre, who have been bringing the stories of the UK’s forgotten female scientists to audiences across the country as part of ‘Minerva Scientifica’. Listen to Essex 2020 podcast #6 to hear Frances and Herbie from electric voice speak about the project.