Choir bucks trend with pop­u­lar­ity

Cynon Valley - - YOUR NEWS - TOM HOUGHTON tom.houghton@waleson­line.co.uk

WITH many male voice choirs strug­gling to main­tain num­bers or stay alive at all, this Cynon Val­ley group claims to be buck­ing the trend.

That’s be­cause the Cwm­dare Voices group, based in the Cynon Val­ley, now boasts a con­tin­gency of 38 singers, also hav­ing re­cently com­pleted its first for­eign trip, which was to Ger­many.

Ac­cord­ing to the choir’s Dave Man­ning, it has gone from strength to strength, hav­ing ini­tially per­formed lo­cal con­certs and grad­u­ally build­ing with tours fur­ther away from South Wales, be­fore its trip to Wolfen­büt­tel in north­ern Ger­many.

Ex­plain­ing how the choir was started five years ago, Mr Man­ning said: “It be­gan life when a group of friends wanted to im­prove on their late night sing-songs held after a few pints in the lo­cal pub, the Ton Gl­wyd Fawr Inn.

“The word soon got out and their num­bers be­gan to in­crease un­til even­tu­ally they grew too large for the pub, so a reg­u­lar prac­tice night was es­tab­lished in the lo­cal Min­ers’ Wel­fare Club.”

Ear­lier this year, on the tour to the Ger­man town, which is near Han­nover and twinned with Rhondda Cynon Taff, they per­formed at a mu­sic fes­ti­val, and re­ceived “out­stand­ing ac­claim”.

Mr Man­ning ex­plained: “The con­cert was held in the packed church of St Trini­tatis – a beau­ti­ful, spa­cious and airy church.

“The choir per­formed an ini­tial set on their own which in­cluded some mod­ern pop­u­lar num­bers as well as the more tra­di­tional Welsh pieces.

“The boys had even learned a few Ger­man songs to in­clude in their reper­toire which went down very well with their au­di­ence.

“For their sec­ond set the boys were joined by the lo­cal mixed gen­der choir, Musikschule, and to­gether they per­formed some mem­o­rable num­bers.

“They cer­tainly made an im­pres­sion as they made the front page of the lo­cal news­pa­per on the fol­low­ing morn­ing.”

The con­cert was fol­lowed the next morn­ing by a per­for­mance dur­ing a ser­vice in the town’s church, where again they were “praised” for their singing.

Mr Man­ning added: “After such an amaz­ing visit and some in­cred­i­ble feed­back from all con­cerned the choir have now set their sights on more over­seas tours in the fu­ture.”

The choir prac­tises at the Cwm­dare Wel­fare Club on Tues­days at 7pm.

The Cwm­dare Voices group, based in the Cynon Val­ley, now boasts 38 singers, also hav­ing re­cently com­pleted its first for­eign trip to Ger­many

St Trini­tatis Church in Wolfen­büt­tel, Ger­many, where the choir per­formed

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