Aug 10 2020


7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Soundings from Essex 3

an old fashioned garden beautifully painted with spring flowers in abundance Ellen Willmott’s garden By Alfred Parsons (1847-1920)

Monday Aug 10th 7pm  ZOOM EVENT

Ellen Willmott:
The Botanical Gardener of Brentwood

A wealthy horticulturalist with a passion for roses, Ellen Willmott (1858-1934) developed her family garden into a world-famous botanical centre and funded international expeditions to discover new plants. Join us for this celebration of Essex’s most famous plant expert and for the premiere of new work by Chelmsford’s own composer and artist Elspeth Manders, who has created music in the folk and madrigal traditions and a beautiful oil painting inspired by Willmott’s garden.


Lauren Lister – British Sign Language Interpreter

“A Sweet Country Life” Folk song from Gloucestershire, collected by Cecil J. Sharp, arranged for voices by Imogen Holst

“A sweet country life is most pleasant and charming,
All for to walk abroad on a fine summer’s morning,
Bright Pheobus did ashine and the hills was adorning
As Molly she sat a-milking on a fair summer’s morning.
No fiddle nor flute nor hautboy nor spinet
Is not to be compared to the lark nor the linnet.
Down as I did lie all among those green rushes,
‘Twas then I did hear the charms of the blackbirds and thrushes.”

“The Moon of Heaven” by Elspeth Manders for vocal quartet; text from ‘The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam’ WORLD PREMIERE

The Moon of Heaven is rising once again
How oft hereafter rising shall she look
Through this same garden after me – in vain

Performer from electric voice theatre:
David Sheppard – Countertenor
Frances M Lynch – Soprano

PRESENTATIONS & DISCUSSION (including audience Q&A)
Dr Patricia Fara – Science Historian, Emeritus Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge
Dr Hephzi Angela Tagoe – skin biologist and charity director at GhScientific
Elspeth Manders – composer and artist

A new painting by Elspeth Manders reflecting how the magnificent garden of Ellen Willmott became the Warley Place Nature Reserve


To get the best out of your Zoom set-up why not download our EVT ZOOM GUIDE audience members and participants


A celebration of Essex’s splendid women of science!
Every Monday at 7pm on Zoom from July 27th – September 14th

In eight weekly episodes of music, art and conversation, historian Patricia Fara and modern scientists will discuss the achievements and frustrations of Essex’s female pioneers. Two special editions in September will feature music, art and science created by local people over the summer. All events include a live BSL interpreter.

Part of  electric voice theatre’s Minerva Scientifica project “Echoes from Essex” in collaboration with Chelmsford Civic Theatre.

May 30th – September 20th 2020

Running throughout the summer, we are celebrating outstanding women in STEAMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Maths & Medicine) from Essex past and present as part of ESSEX 2020.

 Minerva Scientifica – Connections 2020

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