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Wednesday 07 April 2010

CATHOLIC CATHEDRAL OF ST. CHAD'S, THE QUEENSWAY, BIRMINGHAM 7.00 PM, FRIDAY 23RD APRIL 2010 - Media Officer, David Burt reports the following in Birmingham & Midlands press

One of Wales' most successful concert and competition choirs visits Birmingham on the second leg of its 2010 Cathedrals Charities Tour on 23rd April. Celebrating its 50th Birthday, Bridgend Male Choir has recently been recognised by its Borough Mayor for helping to raise in excess of £1M for charity and for being excellent ambassadors. Twice Welsh National Eisteddfod winners in recent years, the south Wales based Choir will compete again in August in the main competition. During the same period it has won major awards in both England and Italy. Regular visitors to the continent, the Choir has made successful recent visits to Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Italy and Ireland. To celebrate its birthday, the Choir has recently released a new CD, “Classic Male” together with a book of its history to date, “50 Glorious Years”. Typical of this Choir whose motto is Friendship Through Music, the proceeds of this Birmingham Concert will be shared between the British Limbless Ex Servicemen's Association and the Cathedral Building Fund.

Having performed in recent times with Katherine Jenkins, orchestras and regimental bands, the Choir will this year perform with other internationally renowned stars including bass-baritone opera star, Sir Willard White and outstanding tenor, Dennis O'Neill, as well as the ever popular Welsh entertainer, Max Boyce. At this Concert, Bridgend Male Choir will be joined by a soprano whom it is delighted to invite back, Helen-Jane Howells, a leading light at Glyndebourne Opera and on organ by Bridgend's own Scott Williams.

Helen-Jane has recently been appearing in France at both Paris and Caen in a Glyndebourne Co- Production where excellent reviews have been given. She has a very busy season in front of her, but has still found time to include this prestigious Concert, supporting such worthy causes. Her contribution will include popular classical, light & Welsh items, plus a popular rendition with the Choir. Scott was given his “break” in a concert featuring the Bridgend Male Choir a few short years ago and has gone on to appear regularly gaining a growing reputation along the way. Just last month, he entertained a packed congregation at one of the south coast's largest Churches, St Michael's, Lyme Regis where he entertained on the Church's brand new pipe organ.

Bridgend Male Choir, led by its energetic Musical Director of eight years standing, John Jenkins and accompanied by Laura Smith, the latter singled out for significant praise from adjudicators at a recent English Riviera competition, are paramount to the success of this Choir. The Choir will open its programme with Sounds Welsh including Llanfair, Lisa Lan, Pie Iesu & Tydi a Roddaist, then In Miscellany, inc. My Lord What a Morning, O Isis and Osiris from the Magic Flute, For the Beauty of the Earth & Morte Criste. It will conclude its first half with items, To God in Prayer viz. This Little Light of Mine, Lead Kindly Light, Choir Patron, Karl Jenkins' Benedictus & Richter's, The Creation. In the second half, its content opens with a tribute to Forces Comrades, with is renditions of Comrades in Arms, For the Fallen & Bui Doi from Miss Saigon. It continues with In Lighter Mood items, Cavatina, Memory from Cats & the Rhythm of Life from Carousel.

Celebrating its 50th Birthday this year, the Choir asked choristers for their favourite items during the term & it concludes with its Birthday Specials, Gwahoddiad, Bring Him Home from Les Miserables, Verdi's O Virgin of the Angel Host with Helen-Jane Howells and finally, Tannhäuser's Pilgrims Chorus

Tickets at £10 (£8 concessions) are available from Cathedral House, Chad's Queensway, Birmingham B4 6EU Tel. 0121 230 6201 and 0121 236 2551. If you only attend one charity concert this year, please support what is likely to be a wonderful evening's entertainment. Thank you.


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