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05th May 2015

Exeter alumni perform gig in Chapel

On Saturday 2 May three recent Exeter graduates returned to the College to perform an exclusive gig for students, which they named the Songwriters’ Circle. Emma Ballantine (2005, English), Sam Falle (2007, English) and Tom Hyatt (2007, Physics and Philosophy) sang and played for nearly 90 minutes in the Chapel along with their friend, cellist Maya McCourt.

Emma, Sam and Tom met at Exeter and explained how several of their songs were written while they were students at the College. Through this gig they hoped to show current Exeter students that pursuing a career as a singer-songwriter after Oxford is entirely possible.

They peppered their set with anecdotes of their own experiences at Exeter, drawing many laughs from the students present. Sam struck a sombre note as the trio remembered their friends Olly Tucker and Deep Watts who tragically died on the same day during their first term at Exeter. His next song was in their memory.

Taking turns to showcase their own songs, but often lending backing vocals or chords to each other’s performances, the trio were delighted to be back together and performing once more, as Tom put it, “under the watchful eye of Burne-Jones’s magi”.

The gig was free to attend, with a retiring collection for ExVac, Exeter’s student-run charity which runs confidence-boosting adventure holidays for underprivileged children from Oxfordshire. Both Emma and Tom had been ExVac volunteers when they were students.

The event was a great success and there are plans to hold a second Songwriters’ Circle in Michaelmas 2015, with current Exeter musicians also performing.

Exeter would like to thank Emma, Sam, Tom and Maya for returning to Exeter to offer such an inspiring, moving and highly personal performance.

For more information on the performers, please see: @emmaballantine @winterfalle @tommyhyatt @mayamccourt


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