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Press Release NOVEMBER 2020





English Cabaret release their film online to commemorate

the 75th anniversary of the opening of the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials


Dreams of Peace & Freedom : The Humans in the Telling tells the story of the journey that David Maxwell Fyfe made from leading British prosecutor at Nuremberg, to champion and drafter of the European Convention on Human Rights in Strasbourg.


Lily and Robert, David Maxwell Fyfe's great grandchildren and the storytellers, write about the way that telling their great grandfather’s story has changed and touched their lives:


The COVID-19 pandemic changed everyone’s lives, one way or another. For us, it was no different. In March, we were just a few weeks away from finishing this project that we had been working on for just over a year.


However, within hours of the prime minister’s announcement, closing all unessential shops and businesses, we were evicted from where we were staying and miraculously discovered a cabin at the Forest’s Edge where we could see out the pandemic safely.


Over the lockdown, we walked the nearby forest every day and our film changed. We became very aware of the freedoms that had been snatched away overnight, and the speed at which doors can be closed on rights. Of course, in the pandemic, the protectionof life was paramount, but our great-grandfather’s story was about how to protect living as well as life.


In the story that we tell, the Nazi regime in Germany, the leaders of which Maxwell Fyfe prosecuted at Nuremberg, crushed freedoms, rights, and humanity.


Governments, even in times of crisis, must respect rights and make sure that every move they make underpins freedoms, and ensure their instant return after crisis. Soon, we hope, the crisis will pass.


Over the current lockdown we should reflect on the rights and freedoms that we love and be ready to welcome them back.


Composer Sue Casson writes:


During enforced lockdown many of us have reconnected with nature, finding comfort in its’ beauty and seasonal rhythms. Rooting our musical telling of how the world sought order out of chaos after the war in a forest reinforces the gradual renewal of natural law. The Nuremberg Trials, though imperfect in some ways signal this commitment. In this woodland setting, the words of David Maxwell Fyfe resonate, and historic images pass like thoughts through the skies. The musical settings of poetry that inspired him, sung by siren voices drift through the trees, like a meditation on the past, offering space and time for reflection on our own future.



Tom Blackmore, artistic director of English Cabaret, writes :


2020 marks 75 years since the opening of the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials. 1945 was the year that the international community came together after the war to work together to

put things right. Today nations must reset after a tsunami of technological innovation which accelerated globalisation, and which in turn prompted a wave of nationalism.


This story illuminates the spirit that we must embrace

for this reset.

The Barbarian





“ an incredibly stimulating piece of history that most people don’t know”

Helena Kennedy


“A wonderful blending of history and music”

Allen Packwood, Director of Churchill Archives Centre, Cambridge


“We live in David Maxwell Fyfe’s world, so this is an important story,

both as it illuminates him, and as he illuminates the world we’re living in today through the funnel of time.”

Thos Ribbits, MusicalTalk

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