Festival of Empire
Pageant of London
A pageant, organised by 'Master of the Pageants' Frank Lascelles, dramatising the history of London, England and the Empire was held. The first performance of the pageant was on 8 June 1911; in four parts, performed on separate days, it celebrated the ‘magnificence, glory and honour of the Empire and the Mother Country’. Music was provided for The Pageant of London by 20 composers including Ralph Vaughan Williams, Gustav Holst, Frank Bridge, Cecil Forsyth, Henry Balfour Gardiner, Edward German and Haydn Wood. This was performed by a military band of 50 players and a chorus of 500 voices, directed by W.H. Bell. The Pageant was so successful that performances were extended from July, when they were due to end, to 2 September.
As part of the festival, an Inter-Empire sports championship was held in which teams from Australasia (a combined team from Australia and New Zealand), Canada, South Africa, and the United Kingdom competed in five athletics events (100 yards, 220 yards, 880 yards, 1 mile and 120 yards hurdles), two swimming events (100 yards and 1 mile), heavyweight boxing and middleweight wrestling. This is regarded as a forerunner of the British Empire Games (now Commonwealth Games), held from 1930.
|Athletics||100-yard dash||Frank Halbhaus (CAN)||10.4 seconds|
|Athletics||220-yard dash||Frank Halbhaus (CAN)||23.0 seconds|
|Athletics||880-yard dash||Jim Hill (GBR)||1:58.6 minutes|
|Athletics||Mile run||John Lindsay Tait (CAN)||4:46.2 minutes|
|Athletics||120-yard hurdles||Kenneth Powell (GBR)||16.0 seconds|
|Swimming||One mile swim||George Hodgson (CAN)|||
|Swimming||100-yard swim||Harold Hardwick (AUS)|||
|Boxing||Heavyweight||Harold Hardwick (AUS)|||
|Wrestling||Middle-weight||Stanley Vivian Bacon (GBR)|||
- The Crystal Palace/ The Great Exhibition of 1851
- Crystal Palace Park
- D.S. Ryan 'Staging the imperial city: the Pageant of London, 1911' in Imperial Cities: Landscape, Display and Identity, eds. F. Driver & D. Gilbert, Manchester University Press, 1999, pp. 117-135
- Hindmarsh, Paul (1982). Frank Bridge: A Thematic Catalogue, 1900–1941. London: Faber Music. pp. 69–70.
- Mitchell, Jon C. (2001). A Comprehensive Biography of Composer Gustav Holst with Correspondence and Diary Excerpts, Including His American Years. Lewiston, NY: The Edwin Mellen Press. p. 93. ISBN 0-7734-7522-2.3
- Richards, Jeffrey (2001). Imperialism and music: Britain 1976-1953. Manchester University Press: p. 190
- Richards, p. 193
- Commonwealth Games Medallists. GBR Athletics. Retrieved on 2014-05-31.
- Commonwealth Games Medallists - Athletics (men). GBR Athletics. Retrieved on 2014-05-31.
- New Zealanders in — The Empire Games — Specially written for the “N.Z. Railways Magazine”. The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 12, Issue 12 (March 1, 1938.). Retrieved on 2014-05-31.
- Festival of Empire: the Pageant of London (1911, Bemrose & Sons, London) (souvenir book, 163 pages, edited by Sophie C. Lomas; master of the pageants Frank Lascelles),
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Festival of Empire.|
- Souvenir book, digitized
- A 1911 postcard[dead link]
- Another 1911 postcard
- History of the Commonwealth Games, from the Commonwealth Games Council for England
- History of the Commonwealth Games from 1911, from the Australian Commonwealth Games Association
- Medallists at the 1911 Games (at top of page)
- Article on the Empire Games, mentioning events held in 1911