Celebrating world music day!

Music dayWe loved being part of the World Music Day  – joining with Making Music and Affinity choir to sing outside Cardiff Central Library! – we even had a few tweets of us singing – sent to the Welsh FAW! – Very appropriately positioned as Wales were playing so well in the Euro’s!

Great night & Half Tidy!

A packed hall with a packed programme of music and entertainment was definitely a recipe for success with our recent annual concert!

June 3rdWe were delighted to welcome Ffynnon (Welsh Duo – headed by our Patron Stacey Blythe) along with Half Tidy (local group) that gave our audience plenty of laughs and a great mix of music – including everyone singing a rousing Calon Lan  –

We would like to thank the Pontyclun Athletic Club for their kind June 3rd ahospitality – along with many of the local businesses in Pontyclun who gave fantastic raffle prizes which helped us raise over £500 for our Charity of the year Alzeimer’s UK!

Alzheimer’s Society – Charity of the year

Every year the choir members vote to support a charity or local cause. This year we are proud to be supporting:

<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-770" src="http://www.cantorionpontyclun.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c-300×200.jpg" alt="Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c" width="300" height="200" srcset="http://www.cantorionpontyclun.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c-300×200.jpg 300w, http://www.cantorionpontyclun.org weight reduction pills.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c-150×100.jpg 150w, http://www.cantorionpontyclun.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c-400×266.jpg 400w, http://www.cantorionpontyclun.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Alzheimers_logo_col_237734c.jpg 620w” sizes=”(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px” />

Dementia can happen to anyone and there’s currently no cure. There are 850,000 people with dementia in the UK and the number is set to rise to 1 million by 2021.

The Alzheimer’s Society  are the first point of contact for anyone dealing with dementia – whether you are worried about dementia or have it yourself, are a family member or carer, or a health or social care professional, and wherever you live.

3rd June ….Save the date!

Please join us for a great evening of music… featuring Half Tidy and Ffynnon Folk duo – at the Pontyclun Athletic Club slimming pills that work.

Friday 3rd June – 7:30pm

Tickets £8 – more details to follow!!

St David’s Day Pics!

We were delighted to be part of a join concert hosted by Llantrisant Ladies Choir for St David’s Day along with Constanza and Spectrum Singers.

4 March -7

And in true Welsh style we all choirs joined together to sing some great Welsh classics including: Calon Lan Cwm Rhondda and Ar Hyd yr Nos! 4 March -5

Tour success!

Cantorion Pontyclun Ladies Choir – enjoyed a lively and very sunny trip to Cornwall at the end of October. We were delighted to sing with Mevagissey Ladies choir as part of their 30th anniversary concert and also an impromptu concert with Keltique ladies choir at our hotel.

Added extras included being driven by Edwards coaches on the Wales team bus used for the rugby  world cup, great accommodation in Looe and having some great sing alongs and entertainment from local music groups via Keltique & friends social night. Great times had by all and great connections made with our Cornish friends!

Photos to follow!

New Patron

Stacey Blythe

 

We are delighted to announce a new Patron supporting the choir.

Stacey Blythe (a former pianist to the choir) is a composer, performer, and multi instrumentalist who has performed all over the UK and America. She is a regular composer for the Welsh National Opera’s max department (new opera ‘9 stories high’ coming soon). She performs with Ffynnon (www.ffynnon.com) and Elfen (a new welsh folk duo)

We are very honoured to have Stacey working and supporting us!!! Great times ahead!

Coffee, cake & singing!!!

Beverly Humphries 1The choir had a very enjoyable morning last Saturday singing at the Let Paul Robeson Sing! exhibition at St David’s United Church, Pontypridd as part of Black History Month.

Our highlight was being joined by the Glamorgan Youth Choir and singing a rousing Circle of Life (from the Lion King) with a beautiful harmony from the young chorus! This was followed by a very moving tribute about Paul Robeson by Beverly Humprhies.

The exhibition runs until the end of October 2015.

Let Paul Robeson Sing!

Paul Robeson PicWe’re delighted to be part of this Let Paul Robeson Sing! exhibition during Black History Month this October  – and here’s some more information about this influential man’s life and his love and connection with Wales.

Paul Robeson was an African-American born in Princeton, New Jersey in 1898, into a world of racial segregation and injustice and yet he became one of the great cultural and political figures of the twentieth century.

He was a brilliant scholar, athlete, orator, linguist – in theatre, film and on record he was a dazzling star – but above all else he spent his life at the centre of the struggle for “peace, dignity and abundance for all”.

His voice and his words still resonate today — “The artist must elect to fight for freedom or slavery. I have made my choice. I had no alternative” about his.

His father was a slave until he escaped at 15 and eventually became a Wesleyan Minister. He taught Paul to have a responsibility not only for his own people but also to care for all those who were treated unjustly – to realise that neither  suffering nor compassion is confined to a single race.

Against the odds, he graduated as a lawyer in 1923 but soon discovered that there were too many obstacles in his way, preventing him from liberating his people through the law. So his singing became his “weapon” in the fight for freedom and justice. He was the first concert singer to refuse to appear before segregated audiences, he raised the status of the Negro Spiritual as a respected art form and began to change the stereotypical “Black Sambo” image in film and theatre.

His strong, loving  bond with Wales was forged in the late 1920s and grew ever stronger throughout his life. Paul Robeson always acknowledged the debt he owed to the South Wales mining communities and his film Proud Valley was the one he was proudest of having made.

By the 1940s Paul Robeson’s artistry, humanity and passion for equality, freedom and peace were loved throughout the world – yet in America his unwavering challenges and forthright speeches often placed him in confrontation with the government. In 1950 – because of his left-wing leanings, accused of un-American Activities during the McCarthy “Witch-hunt “ – his passport was confiscated and all rights to travel were refused.

But he would not compromise. With the world at his feet, he stood up for the rights of the oppressed, sacrificed his performing career and faced the erasure of his memory from history.

Those eight long years of confinement brought protests from all over the world in the “Let Robeson Sing!” campaign. To show their solidarity, each year, the South Wales Miners invited him to the Miners’ Eisteddfod in Porthcawl. In 1957, in only the second live trans-Atlantic telephone link, from a small studio in New York, he spoke and sang to a capacity audience packed into the Pavilion at Porthcawl. In turn he heard messages of live and support and the Treorchy Male Choir singing “We’ll Keep a Welcome in the Hillside”.  His son, Paul jnr. – said that that event helped to revive his spirits during those dark days.

In 1958, when his passport was at last restored, one of his first visits was to Wales  – to the National Eisteddfod in Ebbw Vale, at the invitation of the Labour politician Aneurin Bevan. Once again Britain  embraced  him and that same year Paul Robeson was the first lay person to read scripture from the pulpit of St Paul’s Cathedral and the first black person ever to stand at that lectern.

The years of repression, attack and constant activity inevitably took their toll. He had helped to lay the foundation for the Civil Rights and Black Awareness Movements in America and beyond and – resisting stereotyping – had created a positive and iconic role model.

In 1965 Paul Robeson  withdrew from the world and lived quietly with his sister Marian in Philadelphia. He died on January 23rd in 1976, aged 77 – his voice and his spirit will never be forgotten in Wales – a nation nurtured on choral harmony and a passion for freedom and equality.

“——I keep laughing instead of crying.

I must keep fighting until I’m dying

And Ol’ Man River

He just keeps rolling along”

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