REVIEW: PoPuP event, St Andrews Church, Didling

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This was a unique concert and the Saxon Church in Didling was full.

The cause was to raise money for the upkeep of this cherished church and also help sponsor the education of children from families in need at the Druk Padma Karpo School in Ladakh in the Himalayas through Live To Love UK, a charity with local connections.

This timeless Shepherds Church under the downs was the setting for this candle lit evening concert. The pews began to fill at 7 and at 730 the performers entered, taking up their places in front of the assembled audience; Radio KWG, featuring the beautiful voice of Kylie Earl, Phillip Jeays, Steve Redshaw, WillB and Geoff Allnutt. We were told to expect the unexpected and after an introduction from John Cripps the evening began. The artists took turns to perform and at times joined in together which gave the sense of one performance seamlessly moving from song to poem to instrumental then back, there was no time to catch breath as piece followed piece. This was an inspiring choice of venue, nestled under the downs, no electricity just candles and great acoustics bringing the performancers to life, and what performances including WillB ‘Morning Star’, Philip Jeays ‘November’ and Radio KWG performing for the first time ‘Didling Moon’ especially written for this church and surrounding landscape. Some were close to tears at this last beautiful song and there is something special hearing music performed live in the setting that is the inspiration. The concert lasted an hour and three quarters and half way through we were asked if we wanted an interval, we did not and the music continued, the time went so quickly and then it was over and we were invited down the hill for drinks and canapés from the Award Winning Chef Simon Goodman from the Duke of Cumberland in Henley. From conversations with others at the after concert party it became apparent we all experienced an extraordinary event in a stunning setting with some saying it had been one of the best evenings entertainment they had ever been to. We were truly blessed to have been there.

PoPuP put on events in the local area at interesting and unusual locations to help raise money for good causes with a local connection where a small amount of funds raised make a huge difference. This event was with the blessing of the Parish of Harting with Elsted and Treyford cum Didling.

Will Buchanan

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