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Page last updated at 12:30 GMT, Wednesday, 11 August 2010 13:30 UK
Ivor Gurney archive made available to the public

Ivor Gurney
Gurney is one of the 20th Century's most important writers and musicians

The work of one of Gloucestershire's most famous sons is being made available to the public after three years of extensive archiving.

Gloucester composer and poet, Ivor Gurney (1890-1937), is seen as one of the 20th Century's most important writers and musicians.

The original material from the Gurney Archive will be available for viewing during the Three Choirs Festival, until 14 August.

Items include a mud-spattered music manuscript written in the trenches and his last poem which he wrote when in a mental hospital.

Philip Lancaster, a PhD student at the University of Exeter, has been working at Gloucestershire Archives for the past three years to reorganise Gurney's papers.

He said: "This extraordinary collection is yielding many fresh insights into the life and work of Gurney, and his place amongst his contemporaries.

Ivor Gurney manuscript
This music manuscript was written in the World War I trenches

"It shows the true extent and quality of his work, and his growth as both musician and poet, giving strength to a recent resurgence of interest in this remarkable figure."

Philip has also helped to edit and prepare the scores for Gurney's Gloucestershire Rhapsody, a 'landmark orchestral piece' which celebrates the Gloucestershire landscape.

The piece's world premiere is being given in Cheltenham by the Philharmonia Orchestra on Thursday, 12 August, as part of the Three Choirs Festival.

Ivor Gurney himself performed at the festival over a century ago, when he was a boy chorister at Gloucester Cathedral.

You can find out more about the Three Choirs Festival by checking out the official website.

Three Choir Festival back to Glos
26 Apr 10 |  Arts & Culture
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