#MfEMonday – National Anthems from around the World

With this week seeing the start of the 2019 Rugby World Cup (did you see England play yesterday?!) here are some interesting facts about some of the National Anthems you might come across!

National anthems are generally played on national holidays, but it was Wales who were the first country to start the close connection with sporting events, during a rugby game against New Zealand in 1905.

Mexico – in 1853, Mexico held a contest to see who could write the most inspiring poem to serve as the lyrics for their official national anthem. A poet’s girlfriend tried to get him to enter, but he wasn’t interested, so she locked him in a room filled with pictures of scenes from Mexican history until he came up with something. His ten verse poem went on to become the national anthem and the girlfriend went on to become the wife!

France – while lots of national anthems are about the glory of a nationhood or liberation, ‘La Marseillaise’ should come with a parental warning with gory references to blood soaked flags and soldiers slitting throats… nice.

Japan (hosts of the Rugby World Cup) – ‘Kimigayo’ is one of the oldest anthems in the world with lyrics dating back to (somewhere) around 800. A short and operatic anthem, this tune uses a pentatonic scale. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29FFHC2D12Q

Switzerland – the ‘Swiss Psalm’ has different lyrics for each of the countries four official languages: French, German, Italian and Romansh.

  • What do you do during your lunch break? Not getting a proper break away from your desk? A SINGING break has a host of fabulous benefits, and could help you get through the rest of your afternoon too! The Nottingham Lunchtime Voices meets every Tuesday lunchtime at the Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham city centre, especially designed for workers who need a break! http://www.music-for-everyone.org/whats-on/adult-music/workers-lunchtime-choir/
  • Have you ever heard of a Hornucopian dronepipe? Or (my personal favourite) the Hyperbass Flute? Yes that’s right, they’re all instruments! Weird ones, but instruments none the less… click here to see the 13 weirdest musical instruments ever (electronic badger anyone?)

Have a good week!

Your friends at MfE.



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#MfEMondays are Music for Everyone’s new weekly emails designed to keep you up to date with MfE events & to circulate interesting finds, special features, and motivational moments for your Mondays! We are aiming to send out something new each week.