“Hope”: Brisbane Tolkien Reading Day.


The Brisbane Tolkien Fellowship celebrated International Tolkien Reading Day at The Logan North Library on Saturday 22nd March. This year’s theme for the event was “Hope”. The group presented a 2 hour program in an informal atmosphere, including readings from J.R.R. Tolkien’s Stories, Songs, poems and a comedy costume romp. (program videos at bottom of page)

Introduction: The program started with a slide show presented by Peter introducing J.R.R. Tolkien to the Audience. The introduction related people to Tolkien’s early life from his birth in 1892 up to the publication of The Hobbit in 1937.

Songs: Voro, a university student from Russia, sang songs inspired by Tolkien. Her guitar playing and wonderful voice had the entire audience entranced during her performance.

Readings: “The Black Gate Opens” was an excerpt from “The Return of the King” read by Trevor whose deep voice adds a feeling of anxiousness and excitement to the read passages. The reading ended with Aragorn’s army surrounded by Sauron’s minions when Hope arose for the beleaguered combatants as voices call out, “The eagles are coming!”

The readings continued with Phillip’s passages from “The Children of Hurin” which talk of Hope of the Valar coming and The Lords of the West honouring the deeds and the defiance of Men and Elves that are against Morgoth.

Greg next read the opening passages of “The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen” which relate the early years of Aragorn and his naming by Elrond of Rivendell as “Estel”, a name which means “Hope”.

“The Old Walking Song” was read by Yvonne and then she was joined by Michael. Together they read “The Ent and the Ent-wife”, a song by Treebeard in which he sings of the Hope to one day meet the Ent-wife and find a land where both their hearts may rest.

Poems: The readings were followed by “Poems of Hope”, a video session with commentary. Two poems were presented. First was the beautiful “Morning Star, Evening Star”, a poem about Beren and Luthien, their love and triumph over the Dark Lord. The poem finishes with a new love, that of Aragorn and Arwen.

The second poem “A New Age of Freedom” is about how Aragorn comes to be King and how his coronation has brought a New Age to all the lands.

Sing-a-long: Voro, with her guitar and with words presented on screen for all to view, led a boisterous sing-a-long with fellowship members and the audience. The two songs, “Smaug the Mighty Dragon” and  “The Hobbit Song” were sung with merriment and clapping by everyone.

Readings: The final readings on the program were by Samiah, Kaja and Peter.

Samiah’s reading was from “The Tower of Cirith Ungol”, Sam’s song which gave him hope and strength to go forward and eventually rescue Frodo.

Kaja read “Bilbo’s Song”, which he sang in Rivendell at Frodo’s departure. Then Kaja read a rarity from The Book of Lost Tales, the poem “Tinfang Warble”, one of Tolkien’s earliest.

Peter’s selection came from “The Silmarillion”, the End of the Third Age relating the fall of Sauron and the flowering once more of The White Tree.

Songs: To close the Program, Voro sang two songs, the music for which she composed herself and the words came from two poems written by our own Proudfoot:  “Sail Away With Me” and “Warrior Princess”. The Latter of the two ends with the words, “And future hope that rides with her”.

A Disturbance in the Library:

Just as we were all thinking the program had ended, a disturbance in the Library, saw the arrival of our resident Orc (Greg) who was prevented by Ranger Longshanks (Trevor) from sampling the taste of some books.

After Ranger Longshanks persuasion and showing Orc wonderful pictures in some of the books, Orc found a new admiration for the books. In one of the Lord of the Rings Movie Picture books he found a picture of himself and then using a camera borrowed from Longshanks he took a “Selfie” with the book picture.

It was then Proudfoot gave Orc a Library Card and explained its uses. Longshanks then helped Orc select a book to read which he took to the automatic book borrowing scanner at the front counter. With Proudfoot’s assistance Orc “borrowed” his book and then showed it off to all in the Library. With book in hand, Orc gave a happy wave and shuffled off out of the Library.

Longshanks told Proudfoot that the Rangers had set up a program to teach Orcs how to read and that our Orc was a good and enthusiastic student. Yes there is Hope for Orcs yet.

The Book borrowed by Orc? “The Hobbit” by J.R.R.Tolkien.

The Brisbane Tolkien Fellowship wishes to thank Amanda and all the staff at The Logan North Library for the use of their equipment and premises… and allowing the Orc to roam free.

Videos of the program can be viewed at these Youtube links on Proudfoot’s Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/benalleyn










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