MAGNA CARTA PROGRESS
June 15th 2022 – 4th November 2025
In support of the protection of universal rights and fundamental freedoms throughout Great Britain and Europe and for justice for Ukraine
On June 15th it is 1234 days until the 75th anniversary of the signing of the European Convention on Human Rights. Dreams of Peace & Freedom tells the story of how this foundation stone of human rights came to be in the aftermath of war and justice after war. During the days ahead we will do everything we can to educate, celebrate and protect that great charter of rights and freedoms.
June 15th is the anniversary of the first signing of Magna Carta at Runnymede in 1215. However, the Great Charter was signed and released many times in the decades that followed.
It was shared with the public who looked on it as an assurance from the monarch that absolute rule would be curtailed by the strictures of natural justice and law. Away from the details of its drafting, it stood for freedom, a perception of individual rights, and redress against absolute power.
After 4 decades of barbarity and depression, the world in the 1940s came together to create an international Magna Carta, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Throughout the world, the Universal Declaration spawned regional ‘instruments.’ Pre-eminent amongst these was the Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms drawn up in Europe, the cauldron of war, a Magna Carta Europae.
Through this charter natural justice and law were restored.
Ours is the story of how the Convention was forged as seen through the eyes of one of its' artisans. It tells of a journey from the far north of Scotland, and from Edinburgh, through Oxford and Liverpool to London. And then on to Nuremberg War Crimes Trials and finally to the Hague and Strasbourg as Europe awoke after its ordeal by tyranny.
Like Magna Carta, the Convention should be published time and again, so we cannot forget our fundamental freedoms. And the stories of how they were restored must be widely known so they cannot slip away from us.
In the past a ‘progress’ was the name associated with royal tours. The first Queen Elizabeth made 23 progresses to different areas. A progress is not, however, defined by its' royal association. We are using it, because it emphasises the need to move forward and to improve, and not fatalistically allow things to slide.
At present our rights and freedoms are at risk so we want to tell our story. We will launch our plans on the 15th June 2022. In May we performed in support of Justice for Ukraine and Ukraine is at the top of our minds as we continue, in the knowledge that there can be no peace without justice. Throughout we support those protecting fundamental freedoms and human rights, the Convention and the Human Rights Act, and the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.
We will carry out a number of Magna Carta Progresses to visit as many places as we can, performing DREAMS OF PEACE & FREEDOM in village halls and great spaces. We will ensure that as many people as possible know about the birthplace of their rights, and how there can be no peace without justice.
Composer Sue Casson describes the song cycle as :
‘Inspirational quotations from the speeches, letters and autobiography of David Maxwell Fyfe naturally thread through musical settings of poetry that he found inspiring. The melodies infuse his chosen poetic words with another unspoken dimension – emotion to reinforce the story, rather as in his speeches, the poetry he often quotes heightens the tenor of his legal argument.'
We will distribute physical and digital publications :
The Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms in Europe (ECHR)
The Charter of the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg (War Crimes Trials)
Letters, Transcripts, Blogs & Tweets (Our Story of Discovery)
Traveling with a small collection of objects that we have collected and created during our journey we will share them with the audience. This includes our flame, one of 75 made for Holocaust Memorial Day Trust commemoration of the liberation of Auschwitz in 2020 together with collections from the Kilmuir Papers archive including transcripts and letters.
Read and immerse yourself in the source material and our story at our Link Tree
Discover more at Magna Carta Progress | English Cabaret (englishcabaret.co.uk)
Explore our story through a songcycle, film, book, podcast at The Human's In The Telling (thehumansinthetelling.org)