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Friday 02 December 2016

Annual Friendship Concert with the St Mary's School Choir

Another year of making music draws to a close, signposted for Bridgend Male Choir choristers and music team, by supporting December’s Annual Friendship Concert at St Mary’s Catholic Church, Bridgend.

In a welcoming address from the Church, Father Tim McGrath spoke of the friendship generated between BMC and the Church over many years. This musical extravaganza continues to delight despite the number of occasions it has been repeated in past years. Whilst the format remains similar, fresh faces and content make it one to look forward to. The 2016 offering at the weekend was no exception.   A mix of popular items and carols was the order of the evening, with hosts, Bridgend Male Choir leading the congregational singing of “O Come All Ye Faithful” to open the evening. This polished choir went on to entertain an enthralled audience, under the guidance of its excellent musical director, Ryan Wood and support team of Stephanie Bailey on piano & Scott Williams on organ. Seasonal offerings included the newly learned “There is faint music in the night”.

Other entertainers present were soprano, Rhian Hughes; Scott Williams with an excellent organ recital of “Walking in the air” and of course, the wonderful children’s choir of St Mary’s Catholic School under the leadership of Gillian Weald.    Rhian sang with the male choir recently in Porthcawl, making a big impression and hearing her lyrical content again was always going to be a musical highlight. She sang with feeling, fully engaging those present and speaking her Christmas wishes during a suitable interval to generous applause.

It seems like only yesterday that Scott’s talent on organ became known to the male choir and what an addition he can make, especially on the evening with contributions to “An American Trilogy” and “Christus Salvatos”.

Chorister & narrator, Dr Peter Morgan added to the entertainment, particularly with a reading from Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” and compere, Gareth Davies kept the evening moving, with his usual light humour - but the stars of the show were the children.   Usually, the school’s choristers sing only in the first half, but this time the many mums, dads, grandparents etc. were royally entertained before and after the interval. What was immediately apparent was how much work had been put in to learn their musical items so well. Happy, smiling faces and far more boys than usual greeted all present. Christmas & seasonal items made up the tuneful content and diction was faultless. “Silent Night” and “Away in a Manger”, always popular, were included to the delight of all present. The children then joined their senior colleagues in a congregational closing offering of “Hark the Herald Angels Sing”. Choirs & soloists extend their best wishes for a happy & peaceful Christmas to all.

M Cadogan(Media Officer)

St Mary’s Catholic School Choir


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