Review: A Choired Taste and guests Only Men Aloud at The Lyric Theatre, Carmarthen.
As you would expect from a choir with the clever name of ‘A Choired Taste’, there was plenty to admire in this fifth birthday party concert staged at The Lyric in Carmarthen.
Girl Power was at the fore, but the concert programme did allow space for the ‘boys’ to showcase their stuff.
The choir’s guests included the celebrated Only Men Aloud and they were on fine form in two ‘solo’ sets and two collaborations with A Choired Taste (ACT).
ACT’s musical director Sarah Kirby had given plenty of thought to the concert programme.
There were dramatic powerhouse show-stoppers, a nod to traditional Welsh hymn singing, plenty of contemporary fun, moments of reflection and remembrance, celebrations of matters maternal and a general desire to be as inclusive as possible.
The first half opened with a belter with ACT and Only Men Aloud (OMA) going from nought to sixty with The Greatest Show, from the film The Greatest Showman.
And the bookend for the first half was another classic from The Greatest Show – This Is Me, which featured pupils from the Canolfan Elfed special unit for hearing impaired at the QE High School.
They received one of the biggest ovations of the night – and deservedly so.
ACT is an inclusive community choir for ladies with an age range of 16 to 80. It has grown to more than 100 choristers in its short five-year lifespan.
It’s all built on enjoyment – and that shone through in a magnificent night for the choir.
Musical director Sarah Kirby specialises in ‘mash-ups’ and the choristers excelled during their Girl Power, Hero and Happy mash-ups.
Along the way, there was also a chance to celebrate Carmarthen Amateur Operatic Society and their hit show of last year, Sister Act.
There was also a chance for Ellis Thomas, regarded as ‘our’ Billy Elliot to showcase his dancing skills.
And there was a Lyric debut for five-year-old Nansi Williams, a pupil in the Reception class at Ysgol y Dderwen, to sing Chwilio Heb ei Chael Hi.
Choreography was organised by Fran Chester. Musical support was provided by a five piece band.
Only Men Aloud were happy to play ‘second fiddle’ on a night which showcased the very best of ACT’s work, on both the musical and community fronts.
The finale saw everyone on stage for When You Believe, the Stephen Schwartz classic from the 1998 DreamWorks musical animated feature The Prince of Egypt.
No encore was needed. A packed house at The Lyric had been given a musical feast.
The compere was the Carmarthen Journal’s Robert Lloyd.