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Soldier's Song

The 5-character play is performed by Alec Forbes and Penni Bousfield.

Soldier's Song is a play by Hamilton playwright Campbell Smith.

It is being performed at Te Awamutu Museum at 11am from Wednesday 25th (Anzac Day) through to Saturday 28th. The play is to coincide with the Museum's new Anzac exhibition, and focuses on the issue of soldiers who were executed during WWI for "cowardice in the face of the enemy".

The play was first performed at the Left Bank Theatre, Hamilton in September 1987. In September 2000 it was performed at Parliament to mark the pardoning of 5 New Zealand soldiers executed in World War I.

The Play

Soldier's Song owes it's existence to a letter to the columns of the Waikato Times when the playwright read a letter from Mr. Bert Hart of Taupo. It began with the words: "Sir, A memory which has troubled me for over 60 years is that of the execution, by firing squad, of a friend."
Soldier's Song examines the force of memory and conscience.
It looks at the bond between men who have soldiered together and the veil of silence which they have often chosen to draw over their disturbing memories, and how even at the end of a lifetime their secrets remain locked away.
At the end of World War I an official 100 year ban of secrecy was placed upon these acts so that investigation would not be allowed until the year 2014. It was the wish of Bert Hart that this matter not be forgotten. This play is dedicated to his memory.

- Campbell Smith.