Bridgend Male Choir Choristers' Website
 

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NEWS  UPDATE


5 October 2018


John Mitchell being presented with his life  membership certificate by Choir President, Paul Porter, at the Annual Concert.



5 October 2018


Annual Concert


Bridgend Male Choir delivered their 58th Annual Concert last Friday evening, in the modern and beautiful Capel Y Tabernacl, which spoke across generations of a magnificent, thankfully continuing strong musical tradition.

 

The programme began with a set comprising 'Heriwn, Wynebwn y Wawr' (Warriors We Face the Dawn), 'Hiraeth' ( Welsh for longing) and 'Builth'. The three pieces evidenced a superb pianissimo sound that compelled the audience to lean in and listen - a rare quality in today’s more ‘shouty’ society. The longing of a man for his lost love and homeland, was poignantly portrayed and every man showed commitment to the performance. Diction was exceptionally clear and the phrasing was admirably shaped by the choir’s MD, Ryan Wood. 'Builth' was performed with more confidence and security than unfortunately on the day of the National Eisteddfod, only one month ago. Their surety must have taken many hours of rehearsal, so well done, one and all. If only the judges could have heard you tonight boys!

The soloist for the evening, Tenor Robert Lewis, who hails from Llanfyllin in Mid Wales, spoke in Welsh and English and brought a light and sparkling lyrical sound to the performance of old favourite 'Bugail Aberdyfi' by Idris Lewis. The bilingual aspect of the evening, also from Alwyn Humphries added an extra touch of class. A relaxed and genial performance of 'L’Alba separa dalla Luce L’Ombra' by Tosti showed the potential of this young man in years to come as his voice continues to develop.

In complete contrast, the young and fresh sound of the pupils of Oldcastle Primary School delivered a delightful change of timbre. Their set began with 'Yesterday’s Dream' and the adopted rugby anthem 'Calon Lan'. The tension was palpable as they began, but they soon realised that the audience was on their side and were glued to the lead of their teacher, Miss Charlotte Ellis. All credit to the staff of the school for giving up their Friday evening to entertain us. The children, ranging from 7 to 11 years, were nervously fixated on their Welsh words, with many of the audience desperate to join in and swell the sound - a fact remarked upon wittily by the compere after it finished. 

Due to the unfortunate absence of Scott Williams, the choir’s organist, Stewart Roberts stepped into the breach and gave a sensitive ‘Cello rendition of Maria von Paradis’s 'Sicilienne'. Time was momentarily suspended- beautiful.

BMC followed with an eclectic selection of three pieces, 'Y Darlun', which showed a little uncertainty at the start, but grew in confidence as it progressed. This was followed by 'Aus der Traube', the German words were well known, enunciated clearly and there with some clever antiphonal dialogue, which was appropriately balanced, between the lower and upper sections of the choir. 'American Trilogy' was enhanced by the subtle ‘Cello countermelody. The men were convincing in their delivery and the hours dedicated to this song have very much paid off. My only proviso is that the Last Post motif would perhaps have been more accurate with just the piano, as the difficulty of synchronising two instruments was audible. The choir’s 'Tangnefeddwyr' displayed a melodious and cohesive sound, which just keeps improving each time they perform this beautiful piece.

Credit is also due to compere for the evening, Dr Alwyn Humphreys MBE, a consummate musician in his own right, who smoothed over changes of ‘set’ with bilingual, relevant, witty and entertaining quips and anecdotes. His analysis of the ‘Anatomy’ of the male choir had the audience rolling with laughter. 
  
Dr Peter Morgan, a member of the choir, played a key role in declaiming the Gettysberg Address as a prelude to 'Tell My Father', by Boyd /Wildhorn. The men sang with pathos and a rich, sympathetic unity of purpose. Again security in the music really shows in performance - the hours of hard work paying off. Closer to home, perhaps reminding us as we approach Armistice Day in the centenary year of The Great War that war pervades all times, 'For the Fallen', was delivered with a delicate, legato sound. Ryan drew out the intricate countermelodies in the 2nd Tenors and Baritones, while never losing the thread of the melody at any point. 
 
A second set by Oldcastle choir, perhaps aided by an interval sugar boost, was impressive, after only four weeks of rehearsal. The children were struggling to stand still in 'Oh Happy Day', and as a gospel song, did they really need to do so? The power of the music was flowing through them and they struggled to remain in formal pose. A second young soloist, in 'Naughty' from Matilda (as had the first young lady in the choir’s earlier set), showed great promise for the future as a musician. Good to see several boys in the choir, possibly they will swell the ranks of a Male Choir when they are older.

Tenor Robert Lewis delivered his second set, with aplomb, and here we were treated to the power of his voice as he explored the upper registers and extremes of dynamic in 'Che Gelida Manina' from Puccini’s La Boheme. This is an audience pleasing tactic, but also enabled we the listeners, to see his skill set more clearly displayed.

The final set included 'Gwahoddiad', surely the nations’ favourite Welsh Hymn. It ended with rousing and magnificent Amens - please can we have more of these kind of hymns next time? Myfanwy and Llanfair were regretfully absent, but the boys sang lustily and with a controlled accuracy missing from many choirs, but not this one.

It is a tribute to Ryan Wood and the superlative musicianship of accompanist Stephanie Bailey that they can clearly not just ‘come up with the goods’, but teach them so effectively too.

'Unwaith Eto  Ngymru Annwyl' was an opportunity to showcase the soloist in conjunction with the choir. The relaxed confident sound was marvellous by this point and it was a shame that it had to end.

Llongyfarchiadau i chi i gyd- Congratulation to you all. An outstanding evening, once again.     
                                          

Naomi Hitchings B. A. (Hons), Dip ABRSM, PGCE.


Naomi Hitchings

11 August 2018


National Eisteddfod 2018


This was the first time in a number of years for the Choir to compete and while Saturday did not deliver the result the Choir hoped for it was a wonderful experience for all.

Having listened to the four choirs, all were worthy of the Eisteddfod stage as demonstrated by the way the audience was entertained. In a concert setting any one of the four would have done a grand job in the Donald Gordon Theatre.

Competition is all about little differences - there were little differ...ences but no gaffs from any choir. Unlike dozens of other choirs, we competed, the scars and the sweat prove that. We will learn from this and going forward do what we like to do, that is enjoy our choir and our singing.
                                                                                                   
 Alun Robert-Jones

2018 Eisteddford
1. Heriwn Wynebwn y Wawr
2.  Hiraeth
3.  Arglwydd Da
4.  Builth

The video of the choir's performance at the Eisteddfod was recorded by Daryl Stephenson, a top tenor with the Fron Choir.

https://www.facebook.com/daryl.stephenson/videos/10214737471483871/

31st July 2018 Owen Davies


Our deepest sympathies are extended to Kath and family on the sad death of Owen.


Owen was a very sound Bottom Bass and loved the choir which he joined in 2012. He was also an accomplished and competitive golfer, a Welsh speaker and supporter of all things Welsh. 

 

He graduated in Civil Engineering at Glamorgan Polytechnic now the University of South Wales and travelled the world with his work.  The family lived for a number of years in Australia where he completed his Masters Degree at the University of New South Wales, Sydney before coming home and settling in Bridgend.


He was a true gentleman, a great storyteller who loved a laugh and was admired and respected by everyone who knew him. He fought his cancer with great courage and dignity and was inspirational to others fighting illness.

 

The celebration of Owen's life on Monday, 6 August, saw tributes delivered by his brother-in-law, Griffith Lewis, college friend, Graham Middleton and schoolboy friend, Handel Walters.  The service was led by another schoolboy friend, the Rev. Vincent Walters.  The chapel and hallway was packed with friends and colleagues along with the Choir he so enjoyed.  The Choir, who besides the congregational hymns, sang 'The Rose' as the mourners entered the chapel and 'Morte Criste' in tribute to a well loved member.

22 June 2018 - The following message from Anwen on says everything about the Memorial Concert for David Thomas on the 8 June: 


Dear Friends


I’ve had so much positive feedback from members of the audience at the Concert that you hosted in memory of David. My work colleagues and people from David’s work, who did not expect to enjoy themselves, were simply blown away by the spectacle and the sound. There really was something for everyone in the programme crafted by the talented musical directors.


Eleri, Heledd, Nick and Jen (David’s children) and I were honoured to be part of the musical extravaganza. You all have a fan club in North Wales. Stewart & Ryan, your invitation for choristers in the audience to join the massed choirs for the performance of Gwahoddiad touched the hearts of so many. It was an emotionally charged evening.


Donations and proceeds from ticket/programme sales are now in excess of £3,700. The ladies at the door did an amazing job and I am very grateful to them. Cardiomyopathy UK are overwhelmed by the generosity of so many contributors and would like to contact the Choirs, Beverly, Rhian, Ashley, accompanists & MDs to thank them directly for their invaluable support. With this in mind I’m writing to request addresses where the certificates/letters can be sent.

 

Currently we’ve raised £7,320 for Cardiomyopathy UK, over half of this came from the Memorial Concert. I can’t thank you enough!


Diolch or’r galon


Anwen


And on behalf of Teulu Thomas

12 June 2018

Yet again, It is with sadness that we must inform you of the passing of another of our choristers, 2nd tenor John Hemming who joined us from the Maesteg Gleemen Choir at the same time as Paul Mills and the late David Little.

As we know, John had not enjoyed good health for the last few years but, as seems to be typical of our ailing colleagues, continued to attend rehearsals and concerts, health permitting, often travelling with the recently deceased Cliff Lamburn. He will be sadly missed.

Sunday, 10 June 2018

It is our sad duty to inform you that, after a courageous battle, Wyndham Thomas passed away in the early hours of this morning. Our chairman, Gareth Davies, has passed on both his personal and the choir's condolences to Pauline.


A fine bottom bass who, through a long period of ill health, maintained a ready smile and a quiet dignity, Wyndham first joined us fourteen years ago after seeing us at an afterglow in Upton Bishop, near Ross on Wye. From that time, as many will know, he chose to attend our after afterglows whenever possible and then to join the choir. For a while he even moved with Pauline to Bridgend but they eventually returned to Ross on Wye from where he travelled to practices, hardly missing any, and displaying the same commitment to performing at our concerts. He was, in short, a fine example of total loyalty and dedication who, as Gareth puts it, " if we were a rugby club. he would surely have regularly been player of the year".

May 10 2018


Choristers were delighted to learn that they had been chosen to benefit from a fund set up by local supermarket chain FILCO. 


Ian Hunt from the charity branch of FILCO was welcomed to rehearsal in Oldcastle School and presented Chairman Gareth Davies with a cheque for £250. Ian explained that their charity arm ‘Making A Difference Locally’ (MADL) has been established to support local communities which are served by the FILCO independently-owned convenience stores.

 

Chairman Gareth Davies thanked Ian and said, “The choir is delighted to receive such wonderful local support. The money will definitely help the choir to buy new music scores as it prepares to compete at the National Eisteddfod of Wales in August – a chance to put Bridgend on the Wales music map yet again.”

 

Gareth Reese

Secretary, Bridgend Male Choir

May 10 2018

Peter Meredith

Peter, passed away on Thursday 10th May after his brave battle with cancer.  

Peter's debut within the ranks of the baritones was on the 1 March 2017; though only with us a short time Peter will be missed as he gave all he could to us during his time.  

May 5 2018

Ian Brooks


It is with great sadness and regret that we have to report the sad passing of Ian Brooks, one of our younger Choir Members who passed away Saturday morning (May 5th). Our condolences to Ian's family and our collective respect for the strength and courage with which Ian has faced his progressive illness in recent times.


23 May 2018 - Ian's funeral took place at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, Cefn Road, Blackwood on the 23 May and was followed by a reception at Bryn Meadows Golf Club at which the choir and family enjoyed an 'afterglow' to celebrate Ian's love of music and the choir.


May 1, 2018

Graham Collins

Graham Collins, former top tenor and soloist with BMC for many years, passed away at the Princess of Wales Hospital, Bridgend on 1st May.


Graham joined the Choir in May 1978. He was a soloist at his first appearance and became the leading tenor and soloist. He became know, within the Choir, as 'Graham O'Collins' for his renditions of the Irish Airs "Danny Boy" and "Killarney". He sang with the Choir throughout Europe and Canada and was a member until 2012 when he was forced to retire through ill-health. (P. Anderson)

April 16, 2018

Cliff Lamburn, QPM


It is with deep regret we report the sad passing of Cliff Lamburn, Q.P.M., a long-standing and respected member of the baritone section of the Choir. Cliff, whom we know had not been in good health in recent times, died suddenly at his home.

We extend our sincere condolences to Cliff's widow, Elaine, and to his immediate and extended family and friends.

Cliff’s early working life was as a local PC in the Gilfach Goch area and was one of the first Sergeants on the Dogs Section running the Dog Training School for a number of years.  Cliff retired from the South Wales Police and took up a position with The Royal Hong Kong Police Force as their Dog Master where he served for a number of years and was awarded the Queen's Police Medal for his service.  On his retirement Cliff returned to live in Porthcawl and has been an active member of the Bridgend Male Choir since 1994. 


Cliff’s funeral will take place at 2.15 p.m. on Monday, 30th April 2018 and the Choir will attend in 2nd uniform. 

March 2 2018
David Thomas

The news of David's passing came as a great shock to the membership of Bridgend Male Choir. During his time with us he was a highly respected chorister who took great joy from performing and even greater joy from the friendship gained in afterglows. He served the choir loyally in his term as choir treasurer and will be sadly missed by all.

Our sincere condolences are extended to Anwen and the family.
February 28 2018. Our deepest sympathies are extended to Vince Scanlon and family whose wife, Margaret, passed away recently.  Vince, a choir Vice President, lived in the Bridgend/Porthcawl area for 40 years before setting up home with Margaret in Allicante.  The couple returned to Porthcawl in 2010, closer to home and the choirs which they both enjoyed.
February 13 2018. Our deepest sympathies are extended to retired top tenor chorister, Dennis Coates and family whose  wife, Elizabeth, passed away peacefully in her sleep last night. Dennis had retired from BMC a few short years ago to look after his ailing wife.

Dennis Coates' address is 6, Queen Street, Blaengarw CF32 8AH and telephone number 01656 870761 - in the event that anyone may wish to contact him.

February 2018

It was with great delight to announce that Honorary Membership of the choir had been granted to Bill Hodge, "a very special member", following the committee's unanimous decision at its meeting on Wednesday 7th February. I'm sure that choristers who were not able to be present will be equally delighted and unanimous in their agreement that Bill is a most worthy recipient.

It should also be added that it was also Bill's birthday so the day proved to be a 'double whammy' for him.

January 2018. It is with great pleasure that David Burt has been granted 'Honorary Membership of the Choir' for his work over the years in promoting and supporting the Choir.

David has held several offices in the Choir including Vice Chairman, Media Officer and Chair of the Music Sub-Committee as well as mentoring and supporting probationers.

Response from Pauline:


Dear Gareth,

I am completely taken aback by being given Honorary Membership of the Choir !  I really enjoy doing what I can to help and in turn get to bathe  in your glory when things go well and  share your disappointments (occasional)when things do not go quite according to plan !


I would like to send my heartfelt thanks to everyone who made this possible, what a lovely early Christmas Present !


Please feel free to forward this to all concerned   --   Pauline

November 17.

At the Choir's AGM a new membership grade of Honorary Member was created to recognise the exceptional work of persons who had made significant contributions in the support the choir. 


It was agreed that the first recipients of the award would be Pauline Thomas and John Keene. This is in recognition of their unfailing efforts in raising significant funds for the Choir over many years. Pauline also holds the honour of becoming Bridgend Male Choir's first ever female member.

Majorca Tour 2017 - Itinerary of events:


Wednesday 25th October 2017 - Concert at Cap Vermell, Cala Ratjada 


Thursday 26th October 2017 - Concert at Hotel Rei Don Jaime,  Santa Ponsa


Friday 27th October 2017 - Concert at Cathedral of Santa Maria of Palma

http://catedraldemallorca.org/es/articulo/465/catedral-concierto-bridgend-male-choir

October 2017  Review of the Annual Concert by Debbie Nichol https://notesfromlastnight.co.uk/2017/10/08/raising-the-roof-with-the-bridgend-male-choir/

September 2017 Review of Parkinson's UK Concert

http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/news/parkinson-s-uk.aspx

August 2017 will see the Choir perform at a charitable event in support of Breast Cancer Wales at the Royal Welsh Showground on the 19th August with Builth Wells Ladies Choir and soprano Sally Ann Kingsbury.

July 2017 Check out Debbie Nichol's review of the Welsh Proms, Brass & Voices Concert on Wednesday, 26 July at:

http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/news/brass-and-voices-welsh-proms.aspx

July 2017 Choir Luncheon.

A successful, entertaining and enjoyable Luncheon with guest speaker, Beverley Humphries and compere, Phil Steele.

Summer Raffle July 2017 Winners
Sony 40” TV JOFF HODGES
2 Bottles Wine M ABRAHAM ...
Miniature Hip Flask/Whiskey DAVE THOMAS
Jack Daniels L HEMMING
Whiskey/Pino JO BUCKNALL 

July 2017 Welsh Proms, St David's Hall, Cardiff

The Choir was the lead choir as part of the Massed Male Choir at this year's Brass and Voices Concert on Wednesday, 26 July.  Together with Ogmore Valley, Cardiff Arms Park and Morlais  MVCs and the World famous, Cory Band under the baton of Conductor, Owain Arwel Hughes, CBE.

Thursday, May 25

The terrorist attack at the Ariana Grande concert, in Manchester on Monday, left 22 people dead and a further 59 injured.  The Choir fell silent for one minute at the start of rehearsal to honour those killed and maimed in the atrocity. Our Chairman forwarded an email to Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester to express the Choir's support and respect for those affected by this tragedy. 

May 2017    'Bridgend Male Choir is pleased to support the Urdd National Eisteddfod.  

The Choir donated the Trophy for the Group Singing Competition for boys aged 12-14 years old.  The title of the piece for the competition is "Teithio'r Gofod" ("Space Travel") and was written by Rhys Jones (Caryl Parry Jones' late father).   

Bridgend choir is off to school – in Harrow!

During June, Bridgend Male Choir will be appearing at two historic venues – Harrow School, north west London and the Coal Exchange in Cardiff Bay.


Harrow School is certainly a unique venue and the school’s Speech Hall will be the venue for an evening concert on June 17.  The Hall, which was built in 1871 and replicates the Globe Theatre, will provide a dramatic backdrop to an evening of exciting Welsh musical entertainment with Bridgend Male Choir and the Lewis Merthyr Band, under the baton of renowned Welsh conductor Owain Arwel Hughes.

The concert is in support of St Mary’s Anglican Church, Harrow on the Hill.


The historic Coal Exchange building in Mount Stuart Square, Cardiff has been restored and converted into a luxury hotel, the Exchange Hotel.  It was here at the Coal Exchange that the first-ever £1,000,000 cheque was signed in 1904 and where the choir will entertain 200 guests at the Chartered Institute of Builders (CIOB) presidential dinner on June 22.

May 2017 Another prestigious date for the Choir.  On the 17 June the Choir will perform at Speech Hall, Harrow School with the Lewis-Merthyr Band under the baton of Owain Arwell Hughes.  The Hall, built in 1871, replicates the Globe Theatre and will provide a dramatic backdrop to the event.


Bridgend Male Choir performs at Harrow School - 18/6/2017   https://youtu.be/vU9Tu5PIc84



April 26  2017. It is with great sadness that we have learned of the death of two of our retired choristers, Peter Davis and Brian Thurlow. Our deepest sympathy is extended to both families. Funeral details on home page.
Following a massive Heart attack several weeks ago Peter passed away peacefully at the P.O.W Hospital.  Prior to experiencing poor health Peter was a second tenor for many years. He will be remembered as a notable character and chorister, as well as being a proud Englishman. He is already missed from chorister ranks. The  photograph is from happier times, Scotland 2011.
Brian lived in the Vale and joined BMC from Barry Male Voice Choir travelling with colleagues. His many acquaintances will remember him as a character with a ready smile and will reflect on his stories from the world of boxing, where he had been a referee of some note.

The attached photo taken, in 2009, reflects his vibrant
April 2017  The recent Course run by the Choir resulted in eight Choristers successfully attaining their First Aid Certificate.  From L-R Geoff Caldwell, John Gould, Peter Morgan, Huw Jones, John Conybeare, Roy Lewis (Instructor: Fraser Wright with Resusci Annie) Dewi Williams and Roy O'Brian.  Also in attendance on the course were two representatives from QE Paving, Bridgend who contributed to the funding of the Course.
April 2017 A Date for Your Diary - On Sunday Morning 30 April the Choir will feature on the Roy Noble Show, BBC Radio Wales 882AM (103.9FM-Bridgend) at 9.31am. The show usually includes a choral music interlude, will have Choir Chairman, Gareth Davies, chatting with the show host about the Choir around 9.45am.
April 2017  Concert in support of St Margaret's Hospice Care at St Cuthbert's Church, Wells on July 8th has been confirmed.
St. Margaret’s Hospice has been at the heart of Somerset’s community for over 37 years, delivering high quality, responsive and compassionate care to patients and their families facing a life-limiting illness.

March 2017    Three Choirs Concert, hosted by Bridgend Male Choir and featured Pontyclun based Vocelle Ladies Choir and Oldcastle Primary School Choir.  Another successful concert where the 3 Choirs came together in support of the St John's House Trust (Bridgend) who are committed to purchasing St John’s House, Newcastle Hill, Bridgend as a focal point for the local community.  


Mar 2017 St David's Day Concert. A successful evening where over £1400 was raised in support of the Urdd National Eisteddfod 2017.  The Concert with the Choir providing the backdrop for pupils from Bryntirion Comprehensive School and three local primary schools, Bro Ogwr, Trelales and Maes yr Haul to perform.  

Feb 2017 Urdd Gobaith Cymru St. David's Day Concert, together with local schools (Bryntirion CS, Bro Ogwr, Trelales, Oldcastle & Maes y Haul schools), a brass band and Acapella ensemble Eos is to held on 1st March.

Jan 2017

Confirmed that on Friday, 27th October the Choir will be performing in the world famous Palma Cathedral.
Dec 2016  Choristers were saddened to learn of the passing of HYWEL PHILLIPS and extend their sympathy to his family.  Hywel had not enjoyed the best of health for some years, forcing his premature retirement from the Choir.

2016 Christmas Raffle Draw Prize Winners:


1. Sony 40” TV ,Bernard Jones c/o Alun Guile
2. Xmas Hamper, Maxine Lewis c/o Leighton John
3. Bottle Southern Comfort, Chris Davies
4. Ewenny Pottery Vase, Bill Hodge (choir)
5. Two Bottles Wine, John Jones (choir)
6. Carvery and wine voucher, Erith Morgan
7. Meal for two with drinks, Paddy Joy
8. Meal Voucher £10, Marsha,(Fred Dixon)
9. Bottle Whisky, Georgia c/o Tim O'Hagan


Many thanks to John Keene for his continuing work to make the Prize Draw such a success.


Some figures:

Of the 93 members who received  books 86 sold 1 or more books; 64 members sold 4 books; 4 members sold more than 4 books; John Keene sold most books yet again (14)

Dec 2016 A Service of Dedication was held, on the 8 December, to dedicate the new Keyboard which was presented to the Choir by our President, Paul Porter, in memory of his late mother, Peggy.   http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/news/dedication-service.aspx
Dec 2016  Another year of making music draws to a close, signposted for Bridgend Male Choir choristers and music team, by supporting the Annual Friendship Concert with the School Choir at St Mary’s Catholic Church, Bridgend. Review can be seen at: http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/news/annual-friendship-concert-1.aspx

Nov 2016  The extremely successful Gala Concert with Mike Doyle and the Bridgend Rock Choir. The Concert has been reviewed  by Naomi Hitchings which you can find at: http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/?/gala-concert-review.as?.


Nov 2016  The AGM on the 17th at Bridgend Athletic Clubhouse saw John Keene receiving a special award in recognition of his long standing and continuing contribution towards raising funds for the Choir.  Congratulations John.  Also 5 long standing members of the Choir received Life Membership Awards (Alun Roberts-Jones - 49 years, Leon Evans - 49 years, Peter Anderson - 48 years, Mike Price - 43 years and Mansel Abraham - 42 years.  


Oct 2016 - Well done Sales Director, Pauline Thomas for selling CDs in Ireland to the value of 955 euros.


Oct 2016 - Fantastic trip to Ireland, what a welcome.  Best wishes and a speedy recovery to both Bill Hodges and Pauline Thomas for a speedy recovery following their respective accidents.  


Sept 2016 - All are looking forward to Dublin next month  & now to learn that the Choir goes to Palma, Majorca in Oct 2017. Happy times! 

 

Sept 2016 - A "brill" Annual Concert, with Tab packed out with 300 plus in the congregation! This included very welcome retired & currently incapacitated choristers, Gren Davies; Evan John Davies; Oli Bown; Gwynfor Lewis; Harry Holmes; John Wood; Vince Scanlon; Colin Matthews; Clem Thomas; Brian Lewis & Alan Morgan 

 

August 2016 - Sympathy is extended to retired T2 chorister, T Gren  Davies & family on the passing of his wife, Val Davies. Also to the family of the late Gordon Childs, fondly remembered from the Town Twinning Committee. 

 

August 2016 - This month saw the accomplished debut of Ryan Wood, Musical Director at the Royal Welsh Showground at the Welsh Kennel Club Concert. 

 

August 2016 - CD sales getting close to surplus start after receipt of £584 from Recording company sourced sales at supermarkets. Both Tesco & Asda topped up. 

 

July 2016 - The Summer raffle itself raised £1,600 

 

June 2016 - the 10th Mair's Walk should break £270K for the cancer charity. BMC has sung at every one. Well done lads. 

 

June 2016 - Successful Choir Luncheon raised £3,300 for Choir funds. Raffle winners follow:

 1st prize:  Simon Frost c/o Graham Paul Accountants (TV)
2nd prize: Gruff Davies  (Owen?s son) £150.00 vouchers
3rd prize: Craig Hargest  (UHW Porters) Hair-do for
£30.00 at Peter Morgan's wife?s business, Morgan?s Hairdressers
4th prize: Sophie Edwards (Phil Edwards, B1): £20.00 voucher
5th prize: 2 x bottles of wine (Steve Cottingham)  He
donated this prize to the auction - sold to Maggie Hughes for £20.00

 

26th April 2016 - Sad today to record the passing of stalwart chorister, Davy Grant. A bass soloist, Life Member & real character, Davy will be missed by his many friends.

 

March 2016 - A very successful launch of the Choir's latest CD on St David's Day. # Sounds Like early sales are very encouraging. 

 

February 2016 - Luncheon plans for May are progressing. A great speaker is lined up, broadcaster, journalist & author, Carolyn Hitt will be featuring. It was a great experience singing at the Principality Stadium at the Wales v France, Six Nations.


Jan 2016 - Great experience singing at the Coral Welsh Grand National, many choristers taking advantage of MD, Rhiannon's big race tip!

 

Dec 2015 - Brian Lloyd, son in law of T2 chorister Brian Griffiths won the 40" Sony TV in the Christmas Raffle'


Nov 2015 - Leadership changes. Chairman, John Gould stepped down in favour of Gareth Davies. Full report on Choir website news page.


Oct 2015 - Thanks to North Wales supporter Bryn Williams for arranging a concert at Pembroke Comprehensive, supporting the local Lions Charity.


Sept 2015 - Leicester Tigers RFC - what a venue to watch Wales defeat England in RWC2015. Quite fantastic.

 

Sept 2015 -- The charity, Shine Cymru, reported raising £2,000 at Phil Steele's Rugby World Cup, at which BMC participated 

 

26th Aug 2015 - Choristers & music staff heart-broken to learn of chorister David Little's death this morning after a long illness. Sympathy extended to Dave's family. 

 

August 2015 - Successful concert for Auckland, NZ visitors to Craig Y Nos Castle. Best wishes to chorister, Dewi Williams who fell alighting the stage. 

 

June 2015 - Successful visit to St Asaph Cathedral raised £1,768 for St Kentigern's Hospice 

 

May 2015 - Visit From American student choir, Rutgers was a great success. See Feedback page

 

Mar 2015 - Choristers sympathy is extended to Edith Roberts & family on the death of her husband Alan, a retired baritone chorister

 

Feb 2015 - Plans announced to make a new CD in the Autumn. 

 

Jan 2015 - Not unusually, there are no engagements this month. A chance at last for the Choir music team to be able to focus on learning items. 

 

Dec 2014 - Choir funds benefited by £2140 from the Christmas Raffle. Thanks to all who sold them. Prizewinners - Fred Dixon (TV); C Harper (Hamper); Sue Prosser (Meal for Two); Erith Morgan (Whisky) & Dave Stanford (Wine). A separate Hamper Raffle won by Dennis Walters raised £502.50 for Prostate Cymru. 

 

Nov 2014 - A group of 28 choristers going by the name "Bois Y Bont" visited Tenby for the weekend. Their singing at various outlets raised £200 for Prostate Cymru & a suspected similar sum for Laura's Legacy. Da iawn bois.

 

Oct 2014 - The Choir has returned from a very successful visit to the Netherlands, inc. singing at the oldest medieval cathedral in Europe, St. Jan's, 's-Hertogenbosch 

 

Sept 2014 - Chairman, John Gould announced three Cathedrals to visit in 2015 - Wells, Somerset; St. David's, Cardiff & St. Asaph, Denbighshire

  

July 2014 - Choir won 2014 Male Voice Choir section at Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod - only the 2nd male choir from south Wales to win in 67 years! 

 

July 2014 - The Marie Curie Cancer Care Concert at Trinity Church, Porthcawl last month raised £970 for the charity. 

 

July 2014 - Choristers were sad to learn of the passing of baritone soloist, DAVID HILLMAN earlier today. Our thoughts are with partner, Gaynor & families. David will be missed by his many friends.

 

June 2014 - Llangollen International Eisteddfod - Content, Order & Language are: Bandit's Chorus (Italian); Portrait of My Love (English); Aus de Traube (German) & Cofio (Welsh) 

 

Mch 2014 - Choristers are saddened to learn of the death of retired chorister, MALDWYN JONES on 23rd March. Aged 89 years, Mal is survived by his widow Betty & daughter, Elizabeth. Our sympathies are with them. 

 

Mch 2014 - Choristers have learned of the death of retired chorister, TOM HARVEY. During his time with BMC, Tom did not enjoy the best of health. Our sympathy is with his family. 

 

March 2014 - On 13th March the Choir will use Oldcastle Junior School on South Street as its new Rehearsal venue. Choristers are grateful to St Mary's Catholic School for its recent hospitality & use of its premises. 

 

Feb 2014 - Tickets for Mike Doyle in Concert with Bridgend Male Choir on sale from 16th February. Please do your best to encourage sales. Price £15 (£12 concessions) 

 

Feb 2013 - Marketing specialist, Katie Vokes, who represents Louis Hooper (Rat Pack' Sinatra) & Clare Ingot (Stella) is helping BMC to promote sales for the Mike Dole Concert. Thanks Katie.  

 

Feb 2013 - Jodi Bird, who appeared at the Annual Concert  will appear with BMC on the Mike Doyle Show in April.

 

Dec 2013 - Christmas Raffle Winners - Sony TV Ann Powell; Whisky Peter Davis; Wine Dot Davey Very successful £1,400 taken. Diolch. 

 

Dec 2013 - Choir has been accepted for Llangollen International Music Eisteddfod on 12th July 2014

 

Nov 2013 - Changes to Officers & Committee at the Choir AGM can be viewed on the News page of http://www.bridgendmalechoir.co.uk/  

 

Oct 2013 - Choir shared Joint Runners Up with the Fron Choir, both beaten by Heywood MVC by "small margin" (Adjudicator, R T Elliott) in the Isle of Man International Festival of Choir Competition. Chorus Amici won the Mixed Voices & were overall champions. The Chanterelles won the most entertaining prize. 

 

Oct 2013 - Choristers are saddened to learn of the passing of MARGARET EVANS, widow of late chorister, Rheinallt Evans. Our sympathy goes to the family. 

 

Oct 2013 - Hearty congratulations to tenor chorister, JOHN FABIAN MORGAN on receiving a well deserved Vice Presidency of the Choir for his unbroken stint of 50 years service. A former committee member, JOHN has also been a regular soloist and to many of his peers, he is simply known as "Mr Afterglow Conductor". I would not bet against him winning a "Mr Popularity" vote either!

 

Sept 2013 - Excellent hospitality at St Donat's/ Atlantic College Wedding - catering was amongst the very best yet. Thanks from all of us. 

 

Sept 2013 - Organisers advise that £1140 was made for Macmillan Local Cancer Care from the Ewenny Priory Concert. 

 

Sept 2013 - Competition at Douglas, IOM is shaping up to be a real challenge with 5 good choirs entered into the male voice section. 

 

July 2013 - Choristers were shocked to learn that its Practice venue, the OCLP Club will close at this month end. Fortunately, St Mary's Catholic Church has stepped in & its hoped for a seamless transition. 

 

22 July 2013 - A new CHOIR PHOTOGRAPH in both No 1 & No 2 Uniforms is planned on 22nd. Thanks to Geoff Caldwell for setting it up 

 

July 2013 - Sad to report the death of retired chorister, BRIAN SPARKS.  A real character, Brian had a distinguished sporting career in both rugby union & rugby league, as well as a huge interest in basketball, his interest in the latter resulting in an MBE a couple of years ago. Our sympathy is extended to his family. 

 

June 2013 - Well, it could not have gone better. Two great concerts at Birmingham & St David's Hall, Cardiff went really well. The repertoire is now absorbed into BMC current repertoire, which we hope will delight local audiences.  

 

May 2013 - Well it's almost upon us - more than 12 months learning has us prepared for the Anglo-Welsh Festival Concert at Birmingham Town Hall next week. Let's enjoy it. 

 

May 2013 - Congratulations to Verity & Wayne Munden on their Wedding at the Tunnels Beaches, Ilfracombe. Choristers are delighted that you invited them to share your special day. (Feedback from the couple appears on the Feedback Page) 

 

May 2013 - Congratulations to Wendy & Donald Johnstone on their 25th Wedding Anniversary. Thanks for inviting the Choir to share your celebration at Bournemouth. 

 

May 2013 - Best wishes to new choristers just completing their probation & making their collective debut at Birmingham Town Hall on 1st June. Welcome to the ranks - Gordon, James, David, Russell & Herby. 

 

May 2013 - the Choir is saddened to learn that Accompanist, Laura Smith is leaving after 6 years productive years at the Choir. All wish her the very best for her musical future. 

 

April 2013 - Wow! 67 choristers turn out for Phil & Kate Steele's wedding at St Mary's Catholic Church. Must be a record!

 

March 2013 - Choir steps in at short notice for Bobath Cymru Charity 21st Birthday Concert at St David's Hall, Cardiff - the recommendation from Peter Karrie (West End)

 

Dechrau Canu, Dechrau Canu - 19 choristers are amongst the congregation for the programme from Llantrisant Church to be shown on S4C on Sunday, 10th March with the second part on Sunday, 13th October.

 

February 2013 - Well done lads & Rhiannon & Stephanie for guiding the Choir to runners up to the sublime Risca MC, with last year's winners, Warrington in third place. Onwards & Upwards 

 

February 2013 - At Torquay's Majestic Male Voice Competition on the 16th, BMC will compete with Maesteg Gleemen; Shifnal & District (Shropshire); Risca & Warrington (2012 Winners)

 

January 2013 - Choristers at Bridgend Male Choir congratulate former Acting Musical Director, DAVID HUTCHINGS, on his appointment as Deputy MD at Treorchy Male Choir. David will be mentored by Alwyn Humphreys for the foreseeable future. BMC are indebted to David for his support at a difficult period 12 months ago. Thanks Dave. 

 

Dec. 2012 - It is with regret that I record the passing of NORMAN THOMAS, Choir Vice President of 28 years. Norman is survived by his widow, Frances, his daughter & grand-daughters. Our sympathy is with his family. 

 

Nov 2012 - At the Choir AGM, all officers & committee were re- elected and the vacant committee postion was filled by current Patron/ former Chairman, Mansel Abraham, returning after a 12 months break. Welcome back! 

 

Oct 2012 - Last night's John Jenkins Memorial Concert at the Brangwyn Hall with so many gifted musicians & choristers was a fantastic & lasting memory of the genius of this maestro. What a privelege to have benefitted from 10 years of his talent. 

 

Oct 2012 - Very sad news from Llantwit Major with the unexpected passing of bass chorister, John Ll Thomas (John Llew to his many friends). Choristers sympathy goes to widow, Betty, two daughters & a number of grandchildren. JL will be missed by us all. 

 

Oct 2012 - a great response to the Choir's recruitment drive with 8 new faces already in just 8 weeks. Well done Recruitment Sub Committee & everyone else for the warmth of the welcome. 

 

Another new tour destination for 2013, when the Choir visits the Isle of Man in October - this is in addition to 2013 visits to Torquay, Bournmouth, London, Oxford & Birmingham - there's a lot to look forward to.

 

Oct 2012 - After a long absence through illness, choristers look forward to singing at Peter Anderson's daughters wedding on the 6th & hope to find Peter in much better health. Later Wedding went well & Peter looking a lot better

 

Sept 2012 - Choir's making up the Anglo Welsh Festival in 2013 are  Biddulph; Bridgend MC; Canoldir; Cardiff Arms Park; Dowlais; Mynyddislwyn; Oxford Welsh; Penybontfawr & Pontarddulais


August 2012 - Well done Dave Hutchings, former Deputy MD at Bridgend, on his appointment as MD at Caerphilly MVC

 

July 2012 witnessed a great tour to North Wales, staying at Llandudno and singing at the town's St John's Methodist Church and at St Asaph's wonderful Cathedral. St Kentigern's Hospice raised £900 at the Cathedral, plus half that sum again from the Choir's social activities. 

 

Congratulations to retired chorister, Brian Sparks, on being awarded the MBE  

 

Congratulations to Stephanie Bailey, an Accompanist with the Choir on taking on the role of Deputy Musical Director. Steph made a big contribution during the recent MD auditions and is a popular choice.


Choristers wish to thank David Hutchings who has led the Choir for the past 5 months during a difficult time. Whilst David has now resigned, his agreement to remain as a Guest Conductor is much appreciated. He leaves with best wishes for his future.

 

Many congratulations to Rhiannon Williams-Hale on her appointment in April 2012 as Musical Director to the Choir. May she lead the Choir onwards and upwards. All associated with the Choir wish to thank the entire music team for their endeavour at a most difficult time.

 

Choristers congratulate Choir Founder  Life Member John Wood and his wife Cath on their 60th Diamond Wedding Anniversary  on 15th March


Sadly, February 2012 saw the passing of long serving chorister, Albert Saunders. Albert seems to have been with the Choir forever, although in recent years problems with his sight prevented him staging. This did not stop his attendance at Practice keeping an overview over his beloved Choir. 

 

Chairman, John Gould suffered a stroke in January 2012 putting him out of action for a while. Making good progress he hope to be back in harness in March. All choristers good wishes are with him. 

 

Choristers and Music Team are devastated to learn of the death of its Music Team Leader, John Jenkins on 7th January. All our thoughts and prayers are with Wendy and her family (See Chorister Profiles). 

 

Changes at the Choir - at the 2011 AGM long standing Chairman, Mansel Abraham stepped down being succeeded by Choir Vice Chairman, John Gould. David Burt is the new Vice Chairman. (The Press release regarding Mansel is on the News page of the main Choir website d/d 25.11.2011 and Mansel's own account appears on this website under the Chorister Profiles heading). Dave Davison stepped down from the Committee to concentrate on other commitments.

 

At the same AGM, Founder Life Members, Colin Matthews and John Wood were made Vice Presidents of the Choir. Both will shortly enter their 52nd year in the ranks. What an achievement.


The Choir was saddened by the death earlier this year of Choir Patron, Gordon Lorenz. The sympathy of choristers and music team goes to his family.

 

Summer 2011 - Health, employment & personal circumstances have resulted in the retirement of a number of choristers, all of whom will be missed. They include Graham Collins, Tony Price, Bryn Williams & Evan John Davies. Hopefully they will all attend occasional concerts when they can cast a critical eye over their former colleagues. Many thanks to all for past services and best wishes.

 

2011 - The Choir's "Spanish" branch is hanging by a thread! With the return to Wales of Bill and Wayne; VP, Vince and Quentin, only Patron, Trevor Veasey is flying the flag on distant shores. Bill, Wayne, Vince and Quentin are all now singing again with the Choir.


The Choir is delighted to welcome Stephanie Bailey, Deputy Piano Accompanist, to its Music Team. Steph joins John Jenkins, David Hutchings, Laura Smith, Cheryl Jones & Scott Williams. What a team!