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The latest ‘On Song’ column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star

Robert Lloyd PR, Media and Marketing Consultancy Blog posts The latest ‘On Song’ column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star
Robert Lloyd

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The latest ‘On Song’ column from the Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star

Posted By Robert Lloyd

This weekend will see some of our finest young singers taking centre stage at Ffwrnes Theatre, Llanelli.

Athena, Steffan Rhys Hughes and the choir from Ysgol y Strade in Llanelli are joining forces to perform at Ffwrnes on Friday.

Following the success of their recent new recordings, Steffan and Athena will perform songs featured on their brand new releases – ranging from popular classical pieces to contemporary melodies and popular Welsh favourites.

Athena, Wales’s first female classical crossover trio, features three sought-after Welsh artists – Gwawr Edwards, Sioned Terry and Ellen Williams.

Athena have performed in harmonious union all over the UK at events ranging from a prestigious awards dinner for the Wales Football Association at Hensol Castle in the Vale of Glamorgan, to performances at concert venues in London.

Most recently, Athena performed at The William Aston Hall in Wrexham alongside the renowned Fron Male Voice Choir.

Their debut album, Encore, was released at the end of 2018, marking their first year together as Athena.

TV appearances on S4C include Noson Lawen and Heno.

Steffan Rhys Hughes released his debut album, Cana o dy Galon, at the age of 12.

He featured on the Christmas Spirit album with the National Youth Orchestra of Wales and duetted with Katherine Jenkins for her sixth studio album, Sacred Arias, which reached No5 in the UK album charts.

Steffan is one of the eight members of Classical Brit award-winning vocal group Only Men Aloud, who were crowned the BBC’s Last Choir Standing.

As well as touring the UK, his highlights include performing in Mumbai, India, a summer tour with the British Proms and entertaining the crowds at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff during the Six Nations series.

Steffan released his eagerly-awaited second album in November 2018 – a self-titled eclectic mix of Welsh and English songs, including an original track by himself and a new song written by Caryl Parry Jones.

Styles include folk, musical theatre, classical-crossover and gospel.

Following the successful release of their recent album Seren ein Bore on the Sain label, Athena and Steffan are delighted to be able to share the stage the Ffwrnes stage with the choir from Ysgol y Strade School.

This week has seen some good news for Côr Merched Tybie.

Many weeks ago, this column reported the choir was looking for a new musical director.

Well, now the search is over.

Colin New has taken up the baton, saving the choir from collapse and enabling the choristers to continue their musical journey.

Colin has an impressive CV, with a music degree from Liverpool University, extensive experience in musical directorship, and a history of playing professionally with some notable orchestras.

He is a talented musician who not only plays piano but also double bass, bass and six string guitar.

He is also an accomplished composer; his main claim to fame being having composed the music for the BBC documentary Archangel.

A spokesman for Llandybie-based Côr Merched Tybie said: “We are very fortunate to have him join us! We also have another possible MD/accompanist interested in joining us, and we will have more information at the end of this month, so watch this space!

“This wonderful news also enables us to happily announce that we are now in a position to accept new members and if you are interested in joining the choir, please email us at cmtybie@yahoo.co.uk.”

In other news, there’s a big concert coming up at The Lyric in Carmarthen next month.

A Choired Taste will be marking their fifth anniversary with a concert featuring guest stars Only Men Aloud.

It’s at The Lyric at 7.30pm on Friday, June 28. Tickets are going fast.

Burry Port Town Band will stage an evening of ‘Music from the Stage and Shows!’ at the Memorial Hall on Saturday, July 20, 7pm.

The concert will feature the Senior Band, the ever-growing Junior Band and a very special guest artist, Samuel Wyn-Morris.

The Gwyl Cerdd Dant Cymru this year is being held in Llanelli.

Fundraising is gathering speed to ensure its success. Recent weeks saw a three-night series of Noson Lawen events at Llanelli Leisure Centre.

The chair of the Gwyl Cerdd Dant Llanelli a’r Cylch is Catrin Hughes, who is also a music advisor and trustee of the Loud Applause Rising Stars (LARS) charity.

In support of their fundraising, LARS is organising a big Gala Concert at Llanelli’s Greenfield Baptist Church on Friday, July 12.

The evening offers a feast of choral music and there will be four choirs –

Côr Lleisiau’r Cwm and Harmoni, both under the baton of Catrin Hughes, Côr Meibion Llanelli and Côr Ysgol Dewi Sant.

The concert will feature some excellent young soloists, including award-winning tenor Osian Bowen from Burry Port, now studying at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff.

Also on stage will be five singers from LARS – mezzo soprano Nikkila Thomas, who is at the RWCMD in Cardiff, and Ysgol Y Strade pupils Lauren Fisher, James Oakley, Daisy Owens and Jack Owens. They will be accompanied by Catrin Hughes and Andrew Pike.

The organiser are anticipating a big demand for tickets, which are available from choir members, Cadno Music in John Street, Llanelli, or by contacting tickets@loudapplauserisingstars.co.uk or Cerith Owens 07854 303918.

In other news, Bridget Radford’s two choirs, Lleisiau Hardd and Lleisiau Hardd Bach, will be staging their annual concert at St Mary’s Church, Burry Port, on Friday, July 12, 7.30pm. Tickets are £10 and available from choristers.

The choristers from Llandyfaelog-based Côr Meibion Dyffryn Tywi are getting ready for their annual concert.

It will be at the Princess Gwenllian Centre in Kidwelly on Saturday, October 12, 7pm.

The choir will be joined by Gwendraeth Valley’s Côr Meibion Mynydd Mawr.

The evening will also feature special guests Pantel and Trio.

The compere for the evening will be Eirian Wyn.

If you have news about the choral scene in Llanelli, email robert.lloyd01@walesonline.co.uk or rlloydpr@btinternet.com

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