THERE’S a very special community Christmas concert taking place in Carmarthen this weekend to raise funds for St Peter’s Church in the town. The Friends of St Peter’s Church are holding the Community Christmas Concert on Sunday, December 16, at 6pm.
Its main aim is to bring people together as a community to celebrate Christmas – and to raise muchneeded funds for St Peter’s Church as it faces an uncertain future.
The talented Carmarthen Symphonic Wind Band will be the main performers.
They will be joined by pupils from QE High School, Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bro Myrddin and St Peter’s Church Choir.
Tickets are £5 per adult, with under 16s free, making it an affordable family concert.
A warm welcome and a mince pie awaits if you are able to attend.
Meanwhile, it’s a very busy time for the young choristers from the Llanelli-based Hywel Girls’ Choir and Hywel Boy Singers – and the singing group Angelicus Celtis.
Fresh from performances in Manchester Cathedral and St Catherine’s Church, Gorseinon, they are set to bring their own style of ‘Christmas Sparkle’ to West Wales.
On Saturday, December 15, they will be staging Christmas Fantasia at Llanelli’s Ffwrnes Theatre (curtain up at 7pm).
The Christmas Fantasia will celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Hywel Girls’ Choir and Hywel Boy Singers.
The Hywel Girls’ Choir and Hywel Boy Singers will be joined by Angelicus Celtis, stars of ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent, the symphonic sounds of the British Sinfonietta Orchestra, organist Huw Tregelles Williams, pianist Jane Jewell, percussionist Gareth Hamlin and narrator Jeremy Hywel.
Tickets are £20 and are available from 07795 236807 and the doors open 6.15pm.
This weekend also sees a special evening of Christmas music at The Miners’ Theatre in Ammanford. Seasonal music and light-hearted fun are guaranteed at the December 15 concert in the cosy and intimate surroundings of The Miners’ Theatre.
The evening will be conducted and introduced by Welsh TV and radio personality Alwyn Humphreys and is billed as Christmas By Candlelight and will feature the Chamber Orchestra of Wales.
Later this month, there’s a special concert coming up to raise funds for Burry Port Lifeboat Station.
The concert will feature acclaimed soprano Elin Manahan Thomas, Gary Griffiths and Osian Wyn Bowen. It is being held at St Mary’s Church, Burry Port, on Saturday, December 22 (7pm).
Tickets for the Burry Port concert are £15 and are available from Cadno Travel or from the following phone numbers – 07795415411 and 07900893150.
Elin Manahan Thomas is one of the most exceptional sopranos of her generation. Since releasing her début album ‘Eternal Light’ in 2007, with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, she has performed at many of the world’s most prestigious venues and festivals, and with leading orchestras and conductors.
In May 2018 she was honoured to perform at the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
Baritone Gary Griffiths is a Burry Port boy. He made his Royal Opera House stage debut in 2017 singing the role of Solanio in Keith Warner’s WNO production of The Merchant of Venice. He also made his Teatro di San Carlo (Naples) debut in concert, singing Arthus in Le Rois Arthus.
Winner of the Welsh Singers Competition in 2012, Gary was a finalist representing Wales in the 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World. He studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where, in 2009, he won the prestigious Gold Medal Competition.
A committed recitalist, appearances include the Oxford Lieder Festival with Joan Rodgers and Sholto Kynoch in a recital of Russian Song, the Cowbridge Music Festival with Joseph Middleton, King’s Place with Iain Burnside, the Ludlow English Song Weekend with Simon Lepper and the Wigmore Hall with Malcolm Martineau.
Tenor Osian Wyn Bowen is also a Burry Port boy. Osian is an undergraduate student, studying under the tutelage of renowned Tenor, Adrian Thompson at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff.
Osian has already performed in concert with Sir Bryn Terfel, soprano Rebecca Evans and tenors Aled Hall and Rhys Meirion.
Recent highlights include performing as part of trio in a live broadcast on BBC1 to mark the Passchendaele Centenary at Tyne Cot Cemetery in Belgium. The tribute to Welsh poet Hedd Wyn was performed in the presence of members Royal Family and European Ministers.
In other concert news, here are a few of the events coming up in the next few weeks –
■ Llandybie Male Voice Choir and Dinefwr Choir are presenting an evening of Carols and Readings on Friday, December 14 (7pm) at Llandybie Parish Church. Entry is free, but a collection will be made at the end. By the way, Llandybie Male Voice Choir are in need of a Musical Director. Anyone who can help is asked to email Howard Beynon how[email protected]internet.com
■ On Saturday December 15, Cor Merched Tybie will be holding their Christmas concert at Llandybie Rugby Club from 7pm.
■ Tomorrow, Thursday, December 13, sees The Phil Harmonics perform at The Waun Wyllt Inn in Five Roads.
■ Llandyfaelog-based Côr Meibion Dyffryn Tywi are looking forward to their Christmas events. They include - Thursday, December 13, Towy Castle, 6.30pm. Tuesday, December 18, Red Lion, Llandyfaelog, 7pm. Thursday, December 20, Gwernllwyn Care Home, 6.30pm.
■ Crwbin Silver Band Christmas Concert will be at Pontyberem Hall on Friday, December 14 (7pm). The concert will also feature Ysgol Maes y Gwendraeth choir and wind band. Tickets are £8 (children £5) and will be available at the door or from band members.
■ The West End At Christmas will be at The Lyric Theatre in Carmarthen on December 18.
■The Kidwelly Festival Ladies Choir will be performing at a Grand Christmas Concert and Vintage Fashion Show at Carmarthen Museum, Abergwili, on December 15 (6pm). Tickets are £10 adults and £5 children.
Robert Lloyd works as a media consultant – www.rlloydpr.co.uk If you have any news about the choral scene in Llanelli, the please contact him on 07777 683637 or email rlloy[email protected] btinternet.com