Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Tenby Male Choir – The end of a season

Well its here again, the end of another summer season. Thirty concerts in all and a lot of charity funds raised. There is a definite feeling amongst the choir that we have reached a new level this year particularly towards the end. This is backed up up by our MD “Wilbur” Williams who has been uncharacteristically complimentary of late. I’m sure it won’t last but it’s nice while it does.
Both concerts this week were of the highest quality. After the Giltar concert on Tuesday 27th September “Wilbur” was quoted as saying “that was possibly chorally the best Giltar in memory. I certainly believe it to be the best in my personal decade with the boys.”
Soloists on the night were Peter Neate with Danny Boy, Eric Mullins with "If I were a rich man." and a mammoth session of stand up comedy from Eddie Stapleton.
Then on Thursday 29th September at a packed Arts Festival concert the best compliment of all was the almost universal standing ovation and demands for an encore. I feel sure that the few people not standing were not doing so because of their inability to do that easily. Delight was evident on the faces of members of the audience. It can be hard work sometimes going over difficult parts of a song when we are learning it or practising it but evenings like that make it all worthwhile. Of course our performances are immensely enhanced by the beautiful piano accompaniment of Jill “No Relation” Williams. They say that children should be seen but never heard but in Jill’s case she very much heard but hardly ever seen.
The only remaining founder member of the choir is Tom Pearce and that means he has been with the choir for over 40 years but he has lost none of his enthusiasm or singing quality. He often performs a solo of “My Little Welsh Home” but this time he also sang two other solos with the lovely John Denver song “Annie’s song” and Panis Angelicus.
Annie’s song is said to have been written in about 10 minutes by John Denver on a ski lift in the Aspen mountains in Colorado as an ode to his wife at the time Annie Martel Denver. Panis Angelicus which is Latin for “The Bread of Angels” no doubt took longer than 10 minutes when written by Saint Thomas Aquinas.
For the second interval spot we had something completely different with a trumpet solo by Fred Smith who played the Trumpet Concerto in E flat major. 1st movement. by Joseph Haydn. Fred tells me this is his real name and not just a deeply thought out stage name!! It has a definite “Bert Weedon” ring about it and we all remember him. Don’t we?
Fred is a 17 year old student at Ysgol Greenhill Having started trumpet aged 7 he has been playing trumpet for over 10 years and has just recently achieved his Grade 8. In addition to solo playing, he is an active member of numerous County Ensembles, ranging from County Wind Band and Big Band, to the Pembrokeshire Brass Quintet and the award winning Symphonic Brass. Recently, several ensembles in which Fred is a key member made it though to the national round of the highly regarded Music for Youth festival to perform at the Birmingham Concert Hall. He is also heavily involved with school ensembles such as the Orchestra and Jazz Band, and has been on multiple European tours over the years.
The choir has a really interesting and information packed website. If you haven’t visited it at www.tenbymalechoir.org then it’s really worth a visit. Amongst other things there are videos of the choir. These videos are all live so they may not always be our best performance but they are still enjoyable.  Webmaster David Stewart-Walvin keeps the website bang up to date with news, photos, the choir blog and absolutely anything you need to know about the choir. If you’ve enjoyed a concert there is also a guestbook where you can put your comments and read what others think. David also maintains a choir Facebook page.

He can be contacted on anything to do with the choir on 01834 844926.