I’ve never had so much fun record­ing an al­bum

Caernarfon Herald - - NEWS -

OHUW JOHN PERA su­per­star Sir Bryn Ter­fel has de­lighted his fans by re­leas­ing his first al­bum in five years. Fea­tur­ing a se­lec­tion of the bass-bari­tone’s favourite songs, the al­bum, Dreams and Songs, was re­leased last week and im­me­di­ately en­tered the chart in the top spot.

Bryn, who was born in Pant Glas, near Garn­dol­ben­maen, in Gwynedd, told sis­ter pa­per the Daily Post he has never had so much fun in record­ing an al­bum.

Fea­tur­ing songs from mu­si­cals and duets recorded in brand new or­ches­tral ver­sions with an im­pres­sive guest list, it is a world away from the opera roles he is best known for.

Bryn ex­plained that there are many light-hearted and uplift­ing num­bers to en­joy on this al­bum: “They are all songs I’ve sung for many, many years but usu­ally at the end of con­certs.

“I’ve worked with some amaz­ing col­lab­o­ra­tors and I’ve never had so much fun in record­ing an al­bum. I wish, in many ways, it had been a dou­ble al­bum,” he said.

It was recorded ear­lier this year at the Abbey Road Stu­dios in Lon­don and Bryn and his guests are all ac­com­pa­nied by the Czech Phil­har­monic Or­ches­tra.

“The or­ches­tra recorded their part in Prague and we sang in the stu­dio. It is the first time I’ve made an al­bum in this way and it en­abled me to con­cen­trate to­tally on singing,” he said.

The songs range from Fid­dler on the Roof, which in­cludes a duet with Dame Emma Thomp­son, and a duet called The Golf Song with fel­low golf fan and co­me­dian Rob Bry­don, to Ar Lan y Môr.

Of the duet with Emma Thomp­son, Sir Bryn said: “I’m a huge fan of the film ver­sion of Fid­dler on the Roof and a few years ago I ac­tu­ally got to meet Topol be­fore I played the role of Tevye.

“I texted Emma and she had one day free so she came to Abbey Road the day af­ter it was an­nounced she was be­ing made a Dame, so the cham­pagne corks should have been pop­ping but there was work to be done and in­stead she was on the hot water and honey be­cause she was feel­ing un­der the weather.”

On the same day, Bryn was joined by an S4C film crew and tenor Dai Jones whose Christ­mas show Cefn Gwlad will fea­ture the singer. It won’t be Bryn’s only ap­pear­ance on our screens. He is due to sing at the Remembrance Day con­cert at the Royal Al­bert Hall on Novem­ber 10 and has recorded an­other edi­tion of Gwlad y Gan for S4C.

Dreams and Songs also in­cludes a world pre­miere record­ing of The Shep­herd Poet Of Pass­chen­daele, writ­ten spe­cially for Bryn by com­poser Sir Karl Jenk­ins and his wife, Carol Barratt.

“I learned more about the story of Hedd Wyn, the poet who posthu­mously won the Na­tional Eisteddfod chair in 1917 af­ter be­ing killed on the first day of the bat­tle, record­ing this song than I did at school,” he said.

Com­plet­ing the re­mark­able line-up of singers is tenor Al­fie Boe on Per­haps Love, so­prano Danielle de Niese on Amaz­ing Grace, tenor Joseph Calleja on Granada, and so­prano Kather­ine Jenk­ins on Tell My Fa­ther from The Civil War.

Sir Bryn per­forms reg­u­larly on the world’s most pres­ti­gious con­cert stages and is a Grammy, Clas­sic BRIT and Gramo­phone Award win­ner. He was knighted for his ser­vice to mu­sic.

“It’s been such a roller­coaster since I turned 50 in 2015.

“Go­ing to Buck­ing­ham Palace to be knighted by the Queen was just won­der­ful. It was one of the proud­est days of my life and it’s some­thing that’s not sup­posed to hap­pen to a lad from Pant Glas,” he said.

Bryn also be­came a fa­ther for the fourth time last year when his fi­ancée, harpist Han­nah Stone, gave birth to their daugh­ter.

Dreams and Songs is avail­able from shops and on­line on Spo­tify and Ama­zon. MIKE DEAN (EYE IM­AGERY)

● Bryn Ter­fel has re­leased his first al­bum in five years ● Bryn and fi­ancée, harpist Han­nah Stone, who gave birth to the cou­ple’s daugh­ter last year

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