'The Nation's Ukulele Orchestra'
BBC News, Radio 4, 23rd September 2014
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News

  • Our New Website

    Welcome to the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain's new website.

    Developed to ensure you are kept up to date with all the news, concerts, new releases and more from the Ukes of GB.

    Fear not if you cannot find your favourite page from the old site, we will be adding one plucking thing after another, so stay tuned!

    We hope you enjoy the site.

  • Christmas Office Hours

    Our Office will close for our Christmas and New Year holidays at the end of Friday 20th December until the start of Monday 6th January.

    All orders placed after the 20th of December will not be processed until we return on the 6th of January.

    The Season's Greetings to all our readers!

  • Calling London

    As the Orchestra plays in the USA, an unheeding London should beware! They are set to perform in central London.
    Monday 2nd December at 7.30pm sees the Orchestra at The Palace Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue.

    Booking: 0844 412 4656

    Online booking: Tickets Nimax Theatres website

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  • Alternative Show - Dreamspiel

    The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain has recently produced its very own Ukulele opera, ‘Dreamspiel’, which was premiered at the Arcola Theatre's 'Grimebourne Opera Festival'. The music is written by George Hinchliffe and the lyrics are by San Francisco playwright Michelle Carter.

    Dreamspiel is a response to ‘The Third Reich of Dreams’ by Charlotte Beradt, a journalist. While living in Germany in the 1930s, she secretly gathered the dreams of ordinary Germans, encoded them and smuggled them out of the country. These "diaries of the night", were independent of conscious will. They were, so to speak, "dictated to them by the dictatorship". Some dreams reflected painful political realities and inner worlds of fear and confusion. Some dreams prophetically recognized the aims and principles of totalitarianism and their consequences. One dream is of "the Abolition of Walls", of losing the right to privacy, a consequence of us not recognizing the pernicious effects of totalitarian tendencies, pressure and propaganda, and compliance with them. Current increased claims for the necessity of secret protection from uncertain menace, and for increased surveillance, are matched by the consequent contemporary relevance of this material, which speaks to us today beyond the personal or historical. Furthermore, some dreams reflect resistance: "I dreamt it was forbidden to dream, but I did anyway", or relief, and epiphany: "I don't always have to say no anymore".

    The dream images are reminiscent of Beckett, Orwell, and Gunter Grass before Endgame, 1984, or The Tin Drum were ever written. They are painful, farcical, satirical and theatrical. When this is combined with the individuality and diversity which the Ukulele Orchestra bring to group performance, an audience is brought closer to the political realities of ordinary life; it's fears, prejudices and ecstasies.

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