A perfect start to Christmas

Concert goers who attended the Choir’s Christmas Charity Concert on Saturday 3rd December were rewarded with beautiful carols and readings which acted as the perfect preparation for the beginning of the Christmas season.

Our concert took place at All Saints’ Church in Oystermouth, Swansea with all profits going to the Salvation Army at Morriston.

The Choir sang a selection of carols in French, German, English, and Welsh. Familiar carols such as ‘See amid the winter’s snow‘, ‘As with gladness men of old‘ and ‘Hark! The herald-angels sing‘ (all three carols arranged by David Willcocks) were beautifully complemented by two Welsh carols, ‘Hwiangerdd Mair‘ (Haydn Morris) and ‘Tua Bethlem Dref‘ (David Davies), which were particularly moving. These carols were interspersed with readings taken from sacred and secular texts which all made for a varied and enjoyable programme.

One of the highlights of the concert was the premiere of a new arrangement of ‘O Men from the Fields‘ by Gareth Treseder, a Swansea-born tenor and composer. The arrangement was dedicated to Gareth’s former teacher and mentor, the late Dr. Ian Graham and his wife Mrs. Barbara Graham, a former member of the Choir. Gareth was unable to attend the concert but was able to listen to a recording of the premiere and sent these words by video message:

“I was incredibly touched by your beautiful performance and to hear the piece come to life. I am enormously proud and indebted to you for such a beautiful premiere. Thank you ever so much”.

Hazel Phillips our Choir Chair said:

“It was a privilege for the Choir to be asked to premiere Gareth’s beautiful arrangement especially because of its dedication to Barbara and the late Dr. Ian Graham; performing music with a deep personal connection makes a special occasion even more significant.

“Many thanks to Huw Tregelles Williams for his contribution on organ, the readers and all those who helped behind the scenes to make the evening such a success. Of course, special thanks to Susan and Jon: Susan for her valued efforts as our accompanist; and Jon, whose talent as our Musical Director and Conductor continues to inspire us to greater heights”.

A final word goes to one of our audience members who was kind enough to write in to the Choir shortly after the Concert with these words:

“Thank you for a lovely blend of old favourites and less familiar works which gave the programme a welcome freshness while maintaining well-loved traditions. I found this concert to be the perfect start to the Christmas season”.