The Battle of the Ancre and the Advance of the Tanks (1917): screened with a live piano accompaniment of the officially recommended music.
Following on from the huge success of The Battle of the Somme (1916), the War Office commissioned The Battle of the Ancre to cover the Somme campaign as it dragged on into the winter of 1916.
As well as containing the first views of the new wonder weapon ‘the tank’, audiences were deeply impressed with the scenes of soldiers and horses struggling through the vast sea of mud that beset the Western Front in the autumn and winter.
When The Battle of the Ancre was released a list of appropriate music to accompany the various scenes in the film was published in a leading cinema trade paper.
After research by Dr Toby Haggith of the IWM and the pianist Stephen Horne, this musical medley has been revived and will be played by Stephen to accompany the screening at IWM London.
This is the first time this music has been played since the First World War.
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