Music to play at commemorations

Music is an important part of most commemorative events. Music can create strong feelings and memories. If you can't find a band or musician to perform at a ceremony, then it's fine to play music through an audio-visual (AV) media system or speakers.

Spotify playlist

This year, we’ve released a playlist on the Spotify music streaming service – Anzac Day 2020. The list contains:

  • O Valiant Hearts
  • Abide with Me
  • O God Our Help in Ages Past
  • Ode
  • The Last Post
  • The Rouse
  • Reveille

Audio files to download

You could play these audio files at a commemorative event, such as Anzac Day or Remembrance Day. If you need help to plan an event, see our suggested order of service.

Download this music, courtesy of the Band of the Royal Military College.

Email and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) will post you a free CD of this music.

Commemorative music

The Last Post is a bugle call that is usually played before the 1 minute of silence at a commemorative service.

The Last Post mp3 1.1mb (01:32 minutes)

The Rouse is a bugle call that is often played after the 1 minute of silence at a service.

The Rouse mp3 383kb (0:31 minutes)


During the Anzac Day Dawn Service, the Last Post is played followed by a minute of silence. The silence is broken by the Reveille. The Reveille was originally played to wake up sleeping soldiers. Today, the Reveille is performed in a dawn service or as the first call of the day in Barracks.

Reveille mp3 961kb (1:01 minutes)


O Valiant Hearts is a Christian hymn of remembrance inspired by a poem published after World War I to commemorate those who died.

O Valiant Hearts - 3 verses mp3 2.3mb (02:51 minutes)

Abide with Me is a Christian hymn that asks for God to remain by your side throughout life and death.

Abide with Me - 4 verses mp3 2.6mb (02:37 minutes)

Our God, Our Help in Ages Past is a Christian hymn that asks God for protection during and in death.

O God, Our Help in Ages Past - 3 verses mp3 1.3mb (01:47 minutes)

New Zealand anthem

God Defend New Zealand - 1st verse only mp3 1.3mb (0:55 minutes)

God Defend New Zealand - both verses mp3 2.3mb (1:39 minutes)

Last updated: 5 February 2021

Cite this page

DVA (Department of Veterans' Affairs) (2021), Music to play at commemorations, DVA Anzac Portal, accessed 24 February 2021,
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