Composers and musicians from around the world are collaborating on a new orchestral work on the theme of climate catastrophe, commissioned by development organisation Christian Aid.
Christian Aid is collaborating with Chineke!, Europe's first majority-black and minority ethnic (BME) orchestra, on the creation of a 12 minute piece to raise awareness of the effect of climate change on the world's poorest people.
'Song of the Prophets: A Requiem for the Climate' will premiere at St Paul's Cathedral on 20th May. Dr Rowan Williams, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, will make a keynote address alongside a panel of climate activists.
The piece is inspired by Song of the Prophets: a global theology of climate change, a paper which was released by Christian Aid in 2014 and which will be re-published ahead of the event in May.
Amanda Khozi Mukwashi, CEO of Christian Aid, said: "Climate change is having a devastating impact on every area of life in some of the countries in which Christian Aid works - from basic needs such as food and shelter, to issues such as education and women's rights. The pervasive impact on everyone - and particularly those in the communities in which we work - means the world can no longer ignore it.
"We believe in the power of the Church's prophetic voice to bring about change on this issue - we need to hear the calls from our brothers and sisters who are being affected by climate change now. Music and the arts are powerful ways to tell uncomfortable stories, and we are hoping Song of the Prophets: A Requiem for the Climate will inspire us all to take much-needed urgent action."
Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE - founder of Chineke! - said: "We're thrilled to be working with Christian Aid on this project. Their vision of dignity, equality and justice for all living in extreme poverty around the world - no matter their faith - is an inspiring one. As someone of Nigerian and Irish descent, I recognise the stark inequalities that exist between the richest and poorest globally and want to do my bit to help. We are excited by Christian Aid's creativity and vision to rally people together to stop the climate crisis."