VENUE: Old Council Chamber
Saturday 21st May
10.30 am - 11.30 am: Danny Spooner
"Scottish Jacobite Songs: A continuing tradition to which Burns and others contributed".
Venue: Old Council Chamber
11.30 am - 12.30 pm: Fiona Ross
"Robert Burns as collector and Scottish traditional music enthusiast".
Venue: Old Council Chamber
12.30 pm - 1.30 pm: Vivien Hamilton
Recital: " A Garland of Memories (War: love, hope and longing)"
Venue: Court House
1.30 pm - 2.30 pm: Allan Willingham
"Alexander 'Sandy' Hamilton (1825-1901) : Scottish Millwright, Builder, Miller and Architect : His Legacy at Camperdown".
Venue: Old Council Chamber
2.30 pm - 3.30 pm: Gordon Ashley
“Blether, Blandishments and Blindness: The Taming of Robert Burns”.
Venue: Old Council Chamber
Sunday 22nd May
11.00 am - 1.00 pm: Short lectures / "Q & A"
(15 - 20 minute presentations, followed by questions and discussion)
Venue: Old Council Chamber
Marie Thornton: "Moderator / Chair"
Allan Willingham: "Exit the Old Burns Statue - A vision for the Vacant Pedestal".
Gordon Ashley: “Burns: Driven, Anxious and Skint.”
Danny Spooner: "Scottish Jacobite Songs".
Dr. Peter Hughes: "Robert Burns, more than just Burns Clubs"
Danny Spooner is regarded as the foremost traditional singer in Australia and is also a respected social historian.
Born into a working class family in the East End of London prior to World War 2, Danny Spooner grew up with the traditions and folklore of a typical Cockney family. He left school at the age of 13 to become a barge boy on the sailing barges which plied the Thames and the south coast of England. Over the next 20 years he held various jobs including working on salvage tugs, North Sea fisherman and trawler skipper. This varied, almost nomadic life, has given Danny an all too rare education in the ways of working class people. There was singing at work and at home, but it was not until Danny arrived in Australia in 1962, he realised that there was an audience ready, interested, and willing to appreciate the songs of his childhood and working life. Thanks to a prodigious memory and a willingness to learn about his craft, Danny Spooner quickly developed into one of the best singers of British folksongs in Australia. Over the years he has augmented what he had learned 'on the job' with a vast repertoire spanning almost every part of the British tradition as well as a respectable portion of the Australian folk heritage. Danny has performed in folk clubs all over Australia, New Zealand and in Britain and has appeared at every major folk festival in Australia. He has also worked at universities and secondary schools using his knowledge of folksong and lore to augment his teaching of history and literature.
SATURDAY LECTURE: 10:30 AM-11:30 AM
"Scottish Jacobite Songs: A continuing tradition to which Burns and other contributed."
SUNDAY SHORT LECTURE (Q&A): 11 AM- 1 PM
"Scottish Jacobite Songs"
Fiona was born and brought up in Glasgow, the youngest of a busy household of five children. It was from her dad that Fiona inherited a love of Scottish song, and singing these songs was part of her home life from an early age. It wasn’t until living in Edinburgh in the '90s though, that Fiona really became immersed in the folk scene – regularly attending folk clubs and taking part in the many vibrant sessions of the time.
Respected in Scotland as a fine interpreter of Scots song, Fiona’s singing style represents the essence of the Scots tradition. Fiona’s Scots language repertoire ranges from songs of everyday life, love and work to the ‘muckle sangs’ - the big ballads. She has performed at traditional music festivals throughout Scotland and internationally.
Fiona recently moved to Melbourne and has been busy since then performing at major festivals and events around the country. In addition to her singing, Fiona is currently studying at the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music where she is researching traditional singing and the folk revival in Scotland.
SATURDAY LECTURE: 11:30 AM-12:30 PM
"Robert Burns as collector and Scottish traditional music enthusiast"
Scottish born soprano Vivien Hamilton is one of Australia's most versatile singers. She studied piano, bassoon, violin, singing, dancing and gymnastics from a young age and knew she wanted to be a professional singer from the age of 7 years. Vivien played percussion with the Edinburgh Youth Orchestra and for the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra whilst undertaking her Bachelor of Music (with honours) degree at the University of Western Australia.
Vivien has recorded for ECM, ABC Classics, Move Records, and has appeared in TV broadcasts including the ABC 7.30 Report and the "Classical Destinations" series. Vivien has performed throughout Australia as oratorio soloist, stage singer recitalist and early music specialist and has been heard in recital on several classical radio stations. Vivien is currently Director of the Early Voices Ensemble, at The Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and regularly gives music recitals throughout Australia. For her lecture at the 2016 Robert Burns Scottish Festival, Vivien, together with South African born pianist Len Vorster, will present; "A Garland of Memories (War: love, hope and longing)". This one hour lecture/recital features the musical images of love and longing, work, death and despair, hope and victory. The recital pays homage to Scottish stories of love and war in celebration of the centenary of the raging battles of WW1.
SATURDAY LECTURE/RECITAL: 12:30 PM-1:30 PM
"A garland of memories (war: love, hope and longing)"
Allan Willingham grew up in Camperdown, and is one of the Town's favourite sons. He is passionate about the architecture, history and people of Camperdown and district. Allan is a registered architect with post-graduate qualifications in architectural history. He has extensive teaching, research and practice experience in architecture, architectural history and many facets of heritage building conservation. Allan has written extensively on the history of Western Victoria and Camperdown and district. He has recently researched the cultural history of the Taylor family of Scotland and Australia and the Greenshields statue of Robert Burns at Camperdown in near exhaustive detail. Allan is currently undertaking research on the architectural history of the real (royal) tennis court, worldwide, for a PhD at the University of Melbourne.
SATURDAY LECTURE: 1:30 PM-2:30 PM
"Alexander 'Sandy' Hamilton (1825-1901): Scottish Millwright, Builder, Miller and Architect: His Legacy at Camperdown"
SUNDAY SHORT LECTURE (Q&A): 11 am - 1 pm
"A vision for the vacant pedestal: in place of the Greenshields statue of Robert Burns"
Gordon Ashley was raised on a soldier-settlement dairy farm in South Gippsland, where, during his teenage years, the daily routines of his life
were not too dissimilar from those Robert Burns endured during his youth. Gordon went on to graduate from Melbourne University and Melbourne School
of Divinity before being appointed twice to postings with the Australian High Commission in London. His first posting was as a Migration Officer in
Glasgow and then London. His second posting was as Professions Adviser to prospective migrants at Australia House.
On returning to Australia in the early 1980s, Gordon set up a personnel consulting business to assist both Australian residents and settlers from
overseas to find good jobs principally in Melbourne and regional Victoria. He continued in this work until elected to the Victorian Parliament as
Liberal member for Bayswater in 1992. Among his initiatives Gordon counts the establishment of a new primary school in an established suburb; the undergrounding of the notorious Boronia railway crossing; the early trialling of vocational education in Victorian secondary schools and the enhancement of palliative care services throughout metropolitan Melbourne and country districts.
Following the end of his parliamentary life, Gordon turned his attention to writing and research – a switch that was to lead his discovering the
particular significance of the Robert Burns statue in Camperdown. Largely through the efforts of Gordon, the significance of the statue and the outstanding contribution of Scots to the settlement and progress of Camperdown and district has been brought to international attention.
SATURDAY LECTURE: 2:30 PM-3:30 PM
"Blether, Blandishments and Blindness: The Taming of Robert Burns"
SUNDAY SHORT LECTURE (Q&A): 11 AM-1 PM
"Burns: Driven, Anxious and Skint"
Dr. Peter Hughes
World Burns Federation President, Dr. Peter Hughes OBE, will travel from Scotland to attend Camperdown's Robert Burns Scottish Festival, 2016.
The World Burns Federation was founded in 1855 and aims to educate the public about the life and works of Robert Burns. Dr. Hughes was awarded the Presidency of the Federation in 2015, crowning decades of dedication in promoting the works of the Bard both at home and abroad.
The now-retired Chief Executive of Scottish Engineering has been involved in the world of Burns since he was a pupil at Wishaw High School and he went on to build a reputation as one of the nation’s finest speakers at the annual celebratory Suppers, proposing the Immortal Memory and delivering other speeches on the Bard at scores of such events both in Scotland and overseas.
Peter is also one of the founder members of the Robert Burns Guild of Speakers.
He has achieved distinction in many walks of life and due recognition has been made ranging from his investiture with the OBE at Buckingham Palace to the prestigious membership of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
His interest and passion for engineering featured in his career and continues through retirement from being Chief Executive of Scottish Engineering. Motivation talks to pupils and students of all ages find a place in his busy diary and has given inspiration to many hundreds to get involved in engineering as a career.
SUNDAY SHORT LECTURE (Q&A): 11 AM - 1 PM
"Robert Burns, more than just Burns Clubs"
The "Q & A" session on Sunday 22 May will be chaired by well-known local identity, Mrs Marie Thornton. Marie is a trained teacher-librarian with 15 years' experience in both primary and secondary levels. Marie was the first woman councillor in Shire of Hampden’s 125 year history when elected in 1984 – she then went on to be the Shire’s first female President. She also served as a Commissioner in the Shire of Colac Otway during local government restructure.
Marie has served on several Boards including Wannon Water Corporation and Ballarat & Queens Anglican Grammar School. She is currently vice chairman of Corangamite Catchment Management Authority and is on the board of Barwon Health. Marie is also a member of the Geelong Football Club, Landcare, Victorian Farmers' Federation and involved locally with the Anglican Church. Marie and her husband Jock, who farm their property "Mt Myrtoon",13 kms north of Camperdown, have links to our Robert Burns statue, which of course is the impetus behind our festival. Jock is a direct descendant of William Andrew Taylor, who inherited the statue from his father, had it shipped to Australia, and gifted it to the people of Camperdown in 1883. William and his wife Isabella's eldest daughter, Effie, married into the Thornton family, just as Marie did two generations later when she married William’s great grandson, Jock.