Great Concert: Amnesty hits the right chords May15th, 2013



A   very enthusiastic  audience  applauded  the  new concert  from  “ Loosely Woven” which was  performed by 25 musicians and singers  at  Avalon Baptist Peace Church last  Sunday  evening.  It was called  “Chimes of  Freedom”  after Bob Dylon’s  song and album last year celebrating  50 years of  Amnesty’s International’s work.

#Led by charismatic and talented Wayne Richmond, Loosely Woven again demonstrated their uncanny ability to encompass the gamut of human experience in a single performance. From a charming lovers’ duet of the 1920s to a damning indictment of current Australian attitudes to refugees, the programme spanned a wide emotional spectrum. Accordingly, the solo voices were strong and convincing, especially in newcomer Jeannette Lawrence’s reading of Eric Bogle’s “All The Fine Young Men”. The whole group deftly handled some complex, interweaving parts and subtle dynamics, most notably in a striking a cappella version of Paul McCartney’s “Blackbird”

Meredith Williams’s tender “Sometime”, a tribute to her late husband, drew tears  from me  as she sang of the ‘sun-soaked timeless day’ of his death. And Kristy Dickson turned ‘rock diva’ for Linda Ronstadt’s hit “When Will I Be Loved”.

Among the instrumentalists, John Macrae expertly deployed his armoury of woodwinds to grace each number with just the right ‘flavour’ – a haunting cor anglais in “Escondido” (‘hidden’), a plaintive oboe for the Celtic traditional “Come By The Hills”. Similarly, Gial Leslie’s glockenspiel rang out like a shower of crystals (the ‘chimes’, perhaps?). Flautists Meredith Williams and Samantha O’Brien blended delightfully on   Bach’s “Bouree In D Minor”, backed by John, Gial and the crisp drumming of Eric Eisler.

– Leader Wayne Richmond and his talented crew took their audience to many places – some enchanting, some disturbing, some hilarious, some mournful; I felt I’d been given a grand tour of my own heart. What more could you ask of a night out? #     Review  by  Paul Cruise

Avalon Group of Amnesty International  thank  Wayne and Loosely Woven  musicians for  giving us this gift of music, and for  their generosity in helping those in need. The members of Amnesty and members of Avalon Baptist Church provided a great afternoon tea.     Donations were made to  Amnesty and  many signed the petitions  in support of  refugee rights   and   also  the rights of the women of Afghanistan.     We  were moved by the original song  “Life’s Savings”   sung by  Meredith  Williams and written by her brother –  an angry yet heart wrenching song about the hard hearted way Australians treat Asylum Seekers..       A  great song for an Amnesty concert!

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