SOME OF OUR STORY
Cor Meibion Penybontfawr is among the smaller Group of choirs whose members come from a relatively restricted catchment area. While we are not daunted by the larger pieces of the Male Voice Choir repertoire nor the challenges of a variety of different languages, we do take great care to sing within the capability of a smaller choir and do so very competitively. This then, as a Montgomeryshire choir, is our particular strength and it is reflected in the regular compliments we receive, that “we have a mellow sweetness about our singing”.
Having introduced you to the choir and something of its foundation perhaps now is the time to tell you of some of the things we have achieved during our 63 (in 2014) years of singing.
Notable among them is our being placed first on four occasions at the National Eisteddfod of Wales and latterly taking second in the 2003 National when it came to our own locality at Meifod.
We continue to enjoy the buzz of that tradition of competing regularly in Eisteddfodau and try to enter every year in the Powys Eisteddfod where we have often been placed first or are regularly “in the prizes”. We also enjoy supporting our local Eisteddfodau and foster our friendly relations with our companion choirs both male voice and mixed.
Although we have not ventured further than Ireland, each year we take a long week-
Our most recent tour was to the South of Ireland where we sang with a local trio, Dulcet, in the beautiful Christ Church Cathedral, Waterford. We have, on occasions, also sung with the Gledholt Male Voice Choir Huddersfield. On our Cornwall trip, after singing underground in a theatre created in a former slate mine, we joined the Polperro Fisherman's Choir for a concert in Looe. Another of our underground engagements was singing in the Llanberis Electric Mountain Visitor Centre at Llanberis Power Station. We have sung concerts in Lockerbie, Wigtown Forres near Lossiemouth and Newton Stewart on our Scottish trips and in Northern Ireland at Buncrana, Galway Cathedral, Dunlaoghaire and venues in Newtonards.
In 2010 we enjoyed a most successful trip to Jersey and were able to support Driving for the Disabled Jersey one of the significant Charities of the Island. We continued our island hopping with a visit to the Isle of Man in 2012 where we sang a very successful concert. This was also the year when a number of our choir members joined a larger, gathered, Welsh choir on a visit to Russia where we sang in concerts both in St. Petersburg and Moscow.
There is a particular pleasure in those occasions when we have played our part on the wider Agricultural scene and have several times enjoyed singing at the St David’s Day dinners in the Farmers Club in Whitehall and also on the Bandstand of the Royal Agricultural Show in Stoneleigh, among their list of prestigious musicians.
The events that are both enjoyable and helpful are the Massed Choir concerts, for they always extend our repertoire and introduce us to many friends in the world of Male Voice singing. As a member choir of the North Wales Association of Male Voice Choirs we have, on several occasions, been part of their bi-
Some years ago we joined with several choirs in concert at the Birmingham Symphony Hall when the Canoldir Male Voice Choir celebrated its 40th anniversary. Later that year, when the Cardiff Arms Park Choir were also celebrating their 40 years of singing, we attended a similar occasion with them in St David’s Hall Cardiff. In 2009 we repeated those two very memorable concerts in Birmingham and Cardiff and been glad to be part of the work of those choirs in promoting Anglo-
2011 was a very important year for us in that we celebrated our sixtieth anniversary as a choir, marking it with the release of our second CD and a celebration concert featuring a number of well known artists and performers. We were also part of an S4C broadcast from the area.
2012 saw a significant change in our story in that we were saddened to have Tegwyn Jones, our conductor for seventeen years, retire. He has been succeeded by Rhonwen Jones of Llandderfel near Bala who has already steered us into competing at the National Eisteddfod in Denbigh in 2013 and is at present preparing us to be part of the London Welsh Choir Festival at the Royal Albert Hall 2014 and has ambitions for us at the National Eisteddfod when it come to our area at Meifod next year, 2015.
Côr Meibion Penybontfawr Male Voice Choir © 2014