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Sunday 17 September : BBC Radio Wales Roy Noble Programme

Builth Male Voice Choir appeared on BBC Radio Wales Roy Noble’s Show on Sunday 17 September singing “This is the Moment“. A song from the choir was requested to celebrate the 90th birthday of Nancy Rhys whose husband Dai was a choir member for many years. The item appears 15.30 minutes into the programme which can be heard on the BBC IPlayer http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0953rn4#play

Saturday 16 September : Grand Concert at Royal Welsh Showground

Some people say that there is nothing better than hearing a Welsh male voice choir sing – except perhaps to enjoy SIX choirs singing en masse.

This opportunity took place in Builth Wells last Saturday (16th) when choristers from the Builth Male Voice Choir joined those from Brecon, Dathlu, Cwmtawe, Y Gyrlais, Rhayader and Talgarth in the Clwyd Morgannwg Hall at the Royal Welsh Showground.

The occasion was to raise funds for the Brecon & Radnor Urdd Eisteddfod 2018 and attracted a capacity audience. The Chairman of the Eisteddfod’s Working Party congratulated organisers who have already raised £40,000 towards the target of £170,000.

The nearly 200-strong choir was a colourful sight in their varied uniforms, and performed items ranging from  “Every morning when I wake” to “Gwahoddiad” and a fast-moving rendition of “When the Saints come marching in”.

Bass soloist Iwan Wyn Parry’s impressive voice did justice to both a Handel oratorio and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s “Some Enchanted Evening”, concluding with joining the mass choir for “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”.

Helen Jones was the local contralto soloist, performing works in both Italian, Welsh and English, ranging from the Ivor Novello song “My life belongs to you” to joining with the mass choir to sing “O Gymru”.

The programme was conducted variously by Lynette Thomas, Adrian Morgan, Jonathon Pearce, Peter Sweeting and Conway Morgan.  The excellent accompanists included Becky Drysdale, Bethan Rees and Val Whiston.

The audience was entertained in both Welsh and English by compere Deryc Rees who particularly thanked both the sponsors of the event and those contributing to the efficiently-run raffle. He also took the opportunity to publicise other fund-raising events and the forth-coming Urdd Eistedffod Proclamation Ceremony due to take place in  Brecon on October 7th.

Saturday 9 September : Kington Show

The Choir was once again invited to entertain visitors at Kington Show in 2017. Under the baton of Adrian Morgan and accompanist Ann Bufton the Choir performed two sets of songs – one set in the Flower Marquee and one set in the Members Marquee at the end of the Show.

Lions Choir New Zealand July 2017

A number of choristers from Builth MVC are in New Zealand singing with the Lions Choir during the British & Irish Lions Tour. Spot them on the photos below?

Sunday 25 June : Aberedw Jet Crash Commemoration

Builth Male Voice Choir travelled to Aberedw on Sunday 25th June for commemoration of a tragic accident close to the village.   The occasion marked the death of Flight Lieutenant Ian Hill in 1987 when his Jaguar plane from RAF Lossiemouth was in a training exercise flying up the Wye Valley.  In order to avoid a collision he rolled his craft to port, but this hard manoeuvre flew him into the slipstream of one of other planes involved.  Sadly he ejected too late, and was killed when the aircraft crashed.

To mark the 30th anniversary Aberedw residents had organized children’s sports and refreshments and those attending were entertained by a selection of favourite Welsh choral pieces including “Rachie”.   The outdoor concert was conducted and compered by Adrian Jones, with accompanist Ann Bufton.

Pictured (centre) with the Choir at the Aberedw commemoration is Mrs Rachel Stewart.

The pilot’s widow, Rachel Stewart said how appreciative she was that the anniversary of the sad event had not been forgotten.  At her request the event concluded with the singing of the Welsh National Anthem.

Friday 19 May – Saturday 20 May : Amesbury / Andover Tour

We were Wessex-bound at the end of May for a late-Spring tour.

Our initial concert was in the Benedictine Church of St. Mary & St. Melor, known as Amesbury Abbey.  This Grade-2 listed church was originally recorded in the Domesday Book and still features a Norman font, a  13th century Psalter, a 15th century clock and an 18th century organ.

The occasion marked a return visit to sing with the Salisbury Plain Military Wives Choir. This group evolved in 2012 from the original Gareth Malone initiative and has already sung before  HM The Queen and appeared on the BBC TV’s “One Show”.

The ladies choir took advantage of the excellent acoustics to sing a haunting version of “Danny Boy” and the military choirs’ theme “Wherever You Are”, before toe-tapping renditions of “The Rhythm of Life” and “The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”.  They were conducted by Susan Rayburn, assisted by Hannah Sandu (piano) and Alison Malcolm (organ).

Among  our favourites  were “Bring Him Home”,  a Johny Cash trilogy and the stunning “Creation” by Willy Richter.

Also featured were members of the Amesbury Abbey Church Choir. They performed the theme music from The Vicar of Dibley – “The Lord’s My Shepherd” by Howard Goodall and a “Gaelic Blessing” by John Rutter.

The concert concluded by a standing ovation for all three choirs and a combined grand finale of “Calon Lan” (in Welsh) and “Cwm Rhondda”.

Salisbury Plain Military Wives Choir & Builth Male Voice Choir

Across the road from the Abbey, the Anstrober Arms provided a great venue for what turned out to be one of the most outstanding Afterglows of the year.  We were joined by many of the Salisbury Military Wives, together with their conductor Susan Rayburn, who enthusiastically combined harmonies with us singing many old favourites.

After a day’s sightseeing in Salisbury it was off to “an evening of Welsh song and Hampshire Brass”.  This took place in the 19th century Gothic church of St. Mary’s, which overlooks the town of Andover. The concert was organized by Rotary Andover in aid of the Countess of Brecknock at Hospice and other local charities.

The Andover Town Band was reformed in 2011 under Musical Director Steve Large and once again it marked a return visit by the Builth Choir.

The concert was compered by Rotarian John Barlow and featured joint items by the band and choir – including “Light of The World” by Sir Dean Goffin, and “An American Trilogy” arranged by Mickey Newbury – as well as some sparkling brass solos by Andrew Wood, Alison Bonathan, Paul and Will Kennett.  It concluded with Bach’s “Toccata in D Minor” – more familiarly performed by an organist.

Andover Town Band with Builth Male Voice Choir

We sang a number of favourites including “With a Voice of Singing” and “Hallelujah”.

 

Both concerts were conducted by Luned Jones and Adrian Morgan, and accompanied by Ann Bufton. Dave Power compered in Amesbury, and also for part of the Andover concert.

After the Andover concert a short drive took us to a local hostelry where once again we enjoyed a great Afterglow, including singing requests for local residents, and partaking of a splendid buffet supper.

Next day we concluded our trip by enjoying splendid weather for sight-seeing around the city of Bath.

Saturday 6 May : After dinner concert for Naylor Motor Club

Anyone passing the Metropole Hotel last week could be forgiven for thinking that Llandrindod Wells had become a hub of motoring memorabilia.  For as well as parking areas reserved for Porsches, and many sightings of bright black and yellow Dutch rally cars, the weekend saw dozens of Naylor Cars celebrating the birthday rally of their Car Club*.

And following a celebratory dinner on Saturday, members were entertained to a special concert by the Builth Male Voice Choir compered by Gwynfor Evans.

The musical selection was conducted by Luned Jones and Adrian Morgan and accompanied by Ann Bufton.  And the finale featured audience participation with stirring renditions of “Cwm Rhondda” and “Delilah”.

Singing for guests at the Naylor Car Club dinner Metropole Hotel Llandrindod Wells

*The Club was formed in 1994 to further interest in the Naylor & Hutson TF 1700 cars.  These improved versions of the MGTF had increased power and improved suspension and braking.  Built on steel chassis, the bodies were mounted on ash frames, with forward-hinged doors.  The inaugural meeting was held at the Heritage Motor Museum in Gaydon and the Club now has a solid programme of social events, meetings, discussions and road runs

April : Presentation to Alzheimer’s Society

This year Builth Male Voice Choir chose the Alzheimer’s Society Cymru as the charity to support at the annual St David’s Day Concert. A few weeks after Concert the success of the Choir fund-raising was marked at a regular Monday night practice session.

Pictured (left) is Chairman Viv Jones, presenting a cheque for £1,000 to David Horne, representing Alzheimer’s Society Cymru.

The  donation – a result of ticket sales and income from the raffle – at the Choir’s 12th annual St. David Day’s concert was match-funded by Barclays Bank.

Saturday 8 April : Wedding St David’s Church Llanwrtyd Wells

Glorious day singing for Alex and Chelsea’s wedding at St David’s Church Llanwrtyd Wells. Guests formed a guard of honour for the Choir as they left the Church.

Choir at St David’s Church Llanwrtyd Wells

Guard of honour for Choir leaving the Church

Sunday 19 March : Charity Concert St Mary’s Church Builth Wells

An outstanding evening of choral music took place at St. Mary’s Church, Builth Wells on Sunday 19th March. This three choir concert was in aid of Cancer Research & MacMillan Nurses and attracted a capacity audience.  The evening was staged by Eleanor Madoc-Davies, the renowned Eisteddfod winner.

First to appear were Eleanor’s Girls, six talented youngsters whose glorious tones soared towards the roof of the church.  Their repertoire included “Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho”, “the Rhythm of Life” and “Ave Maria”.  Later in the concert a selection of solo items demonstrated the full range of these young voices.

Builth Male Voice Choir’s selection ranged from “Benedictus” to “Let It Be Me” and “When I Survey the Wond’rous Cross”.     Builth Wells Ladies Choir sang “The Lord Is My Shepherd” and “With the Voice of Singing”, but amazed the audience with their clever rendition of “Sing a Song of Sixpence”. They then went on to stun everyone with a powerful version of the “Hallelujah Chorus”.

Eleanor Madoc-Davies’ swansong was a performance of “The Holy City”, accompanied by her young protegees – which resulted in a standing ovation from the audience.  She was presented with a bouquet to mark her birthday. In thanking everyone involved (including all the conductors and accompanists) Eleanor announced that in the region of £800 had been raised for the charities.

In conclusion all the singers combined in a powerful offering of “Calon Lân”.

Sunday 5 March : Wedding Fayre Metropole Hotel Llandrindod wells

Choir members promoted Builth Male Voice Choir at the Spring Wedding Fayre at the Metropole Hotel, Llandrindod Wells on Sunday 5 March. A number of prospective bride and grooms made enquiries at the stand taking away Information leaflets  and expressing a wish to invite the Choir to be part of their wedding plans.

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Metropole Hotel Wedding Fayre March 2017

St David’s Day Concert : Saturday 4 March

The traditional St. David’s Day Concert was staged by the Builth Male Voice Choir on 4th March. This event marked the 12th such occasion and the audience enjoyed a varied programme of music from their talented guests. The compere was Gwnfor Evans.

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Builth Male Voice Choir with guests Gwynedd Parry and Morgan Field at the St David’s Day Concert March 2017

Featured was baritone soloist Gwynedd Parry  (winner of the Osborne Roberts memorial Prize at the 1998 National Eisteddfod) whose repertoire included Bryniau Aur Fy Ngwlad and the Anthem from the musical Chess.  He was accompanied by his wife pianist Meinir Jones Parry (also a National Eisteddford winner).

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Gwynedd Parry and accompanist Meinir Parry

Also performing was local mezzo soprano Morgan-Ellen Field who is hoping to further her studies at the Royal College of Music and Drama in Cardiff, and then pursue a music career. Included in her programme was “My Little Welsh Home”, and Mozart’s “Voi Che Sapete”.

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Morgan Field with accompanist Ann Bufton

The Choir’s performance included a wide range of music ranging from “Anfonaf Angel”, via Verdi’s “Speed Your Journey”, to “Bring Him Home” (from Les Miserables). The concert was conducted by Luned Jones and Adrian Morgan with accompanist Ann Bufton.

The evening included a well-supported raffle and the Choir would like to express its appreciation to those who donated prizes including the Llanelwedd Arms Hotel, The Old Railway Garden Centre, Arwyn Morgans – Butchers, The Greyhound Hotel, the RWAS, Morrisons (Brecon), and the Choir supporters group.

The amount of £412.20 was raised by the raffle for the Alzheimer’s Society Cymru. This donation is to be matched by Barclays, whose representative, Howard Nixon, also attended the concert to on behalf of the Bank.

Monday 20 February : Powys Well-being Team visit Choir Practice

Chairman Viv Jones talks of the well-being benefits when being a choir member

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