The band famously continued to bravely play on as their ill-fated ship sank beneath the icy waves of the North Atlantic.
Led by bandleader Wallace Hartley, the group and its members were all originally from Liverpool.
To mark the centenery of the maritime disaster and the orchestra’s selfless actions, local string quartets will take it in turns to perform music from the era in the museum’s atrium throughout Saturday and Sunday.
Whilst modern players and listeners may not be too familiar with the waltzes and polkas that will feature on the weekend’s set lists, songs such as Alexander’s Ragtime Band and In the Shadows were often performed in the ship’s first class dining room, and will be a fitting tribute to the Titanic’s heroic band.
Commenting on the event, Julia Bryan, senior education manager at the Museum of Liverpool, said that the museum wanted to do something to mark the anniversary “that would serve as a reminder of the unselfish deeds of these men on that night”.
The Band That Played On is one of the most commonly-told and inspiring stories about the sinking of the Titanic. The orchestra continued playing on the ship’s deck as it sunk, relaxing and entertaining their audience of terrified passengers.
Hartley had always stated that if he were to ever be on a sinking ship he would play the hymn Nearer, My God, to Thee, and it is believed that he did, with water up to his knees, as the band’s final number on the ailing Titanic.
When his body was recovered and returned to Liverpool, his music box was still strapped to his body.
“We want to encourage local people to get involved with this event and particularly welcome young performers and string quartets to come along and help us keep the music of the Titanic orchestra alive, in memory of the eight members of the orchestra, all of whom died that night,” Bryan added.
As well as adding to the programme of Titanic remeberence events across the UK this month, the musical tribute will also tie into Liverpool’s street theatre festival Sea Odyssey Giant Spectacular which takes place in the city this weekend too.
call put out recently by the Museum of Liverpool
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