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Thursday 04 November 2010

Choristers from Bridgend delighted to have premiered a vocal tribute to H M Forces. David Burt writes........

In its 50th Birthday year, Bridgend Male Choir was delighted to accept an invite to north west England to première a modern vocal tribute to British servicemen and women involved in current armed conflicts. Choristers feel both privileged and honoured that they had been chosen to first perform “HOME AGAIN” with words appropriate for the conflicts in which our Armed Forces are presently engaged.

Well known Wirral based, writer and composer, Roy Davies, was seeking a choir and soloist to bring his poignant words and musical score to life and was introduced to Bridgend Male Choir, Musical Director, John Jenkins, who has led the choristers at Bridgend for the past 8 years. During this time, the Choir has won two Welsh National Eisteddfodau prizes as well as major competitions in England & Italy, as well as touring extensively. John Jenkins in turn adapted the music for the Choir which has since been the focus at regular practice sessions. John introduced the soloist who performed with the Choir.

Anglesey born soprano, Llio Evans, no stranger to Eisteddfod competition and stage success herself and the most recent beneficiary of the Russell Sheppard Trust Scholarship joined Bridgend Male Choir on its short visit to Liverpool at the weekend. Llio was as excited as the choristers to join this moving tribute in two concerts with a song which it is now hoped will benefit the Royal British Legion, Poppy Appeal.

Concerts at two quite different venues were performed. The first was at the Mechanics Theatre, Burnley and featured the Choir with Llio Evans. Also appearing at the Concert was concert pianist, Richard Lennox. The second Concert, on the following evening and gaining another standing ovation, was at the sacred venue of St Hildeburg's Church at Hoylake, on the Wirral. The Choir and Llio Evans at that Concert were joined by Bridgend based organist, Scott Williams. Accompanist for both concerts was Bridgend Male Choir's treasured Laura Smith.

This short tour further enhanced what has already been a significant Golden Celebrations year, which has included performances at Cathedrals in the cities of Cardiff, Bristol and Liverpool; major theatre concerts at Porthcawl with both bass baritone, Sir Willard White and iconic Welsh entertainer & Choir Patron, Max Boyce and receipt of a Civic Award from the Mayor of the County, acknowledging the raising of in excess of £1 million for charity and as ambassadors for Bridgend and Wales.

Bridgend Male Choir's next event is the re-enactment of its inaugural concert of November, 1960 at the same venue, Tabernacle Chapel, Pontycymer on Friday, November 26th. Also appearing will be Meirion Davies (trumpet) and the school choirs of Ffaldau Primary and Ysgol Gymraeg Cwm Garw. Yet another Choir Patron, the Bridgend born BBC Newsreader and Journalist, Huw Edwards will be the compere. The Concert supports Cancer Research Wales. Tickets are £5 & are available from Blaengarw Post Office; Pontycymer Post Office, Tabernacle Chapel, Pontycymer and Choir Secretary, Gareth Reese on 07773 170373.


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